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Competitive Solutions: The Strategist's Toolkit Paperback – August 14, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-0691124032 ISBN-10: 0691124035

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 424 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (August 14, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0691124035
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691124032
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #928,775 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

One of Strategy & Business's Best Business Books for 2003

"Competitive Solutions: The Strategist's Toolkit belongs on every strategist's bookshelf. McAfee is an economist with a gift for selecting and communicating the best new thinking by economists about business, translating from often abstruse mathematics to clear English and understandable examples. McAfee explains economists' latest thinking about pricing, auctions, signaling, and incentives--key decisions that have make-or-break potential for a company."--Strategy & Business

"[T]his book does an excellent job of translating the insights of modern IO into language that business students can readily grasp. . . . I am confident that this is a book that will be received by good students and will serve well as the main text in any strategy course that approaches the topic."--Benjamin E. Hermalin, Journal of Economic Literature

From the Inside Flap

"A fascinating read-combining economics and strategy. Just what we need at Samsung."--John Shin, Senior Consultant in Strategy and Leadership, Samsung Electronics, Ltd.

"Preston McAfee has produced a superb, remarkably comprehensive book on competitive strategy. It is accessible, accurate, and entertaining! Students will stay awake reading it. At its core are numerous examples from actual business settings that are clearly relevant to today's strategist."--Peter Cramton, University of Maryland

"This is a very good book that goes a long way toward filling the need for a work on the economics of competition. It has the potential to substantially improve courses in competitive strategy. The coverage is wonderful, the examples are interesting, the informal arguments are excellent, and the style is engaging."--Mark Satterthwaite, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University

"The very readable style, accessibility, and richness and recentness of examples differentiate this book from some of its competitors in a way that should make it popular with students. McAfee clearly knows his subject well, understands the connections between the theoretical and empirical scholarship in the economics of strategy and the practical challenges faced by strategists, and draws on the latest academic literature and a variety of relevant examples in making his points."--Eric Zitzewitz, Stanford Business School

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 8 customer reviews
The writing is clear, punchy, and often funny.
brightSnow
This is a terrific book which provides a wide range of strategies relating to business today.
Leon M. Bodevin
I'd say this book is something to read and keep on the bookshelf for future reference.
VIPRYN

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Leon M. Bodevin on October 21, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This is a terrific book which provides a wide range of strategies relating to business today. The best way to describe this book is as a sort of Art of War for business strategists (although Professor McAfee is quick to point out that war in business as in other areas should be engaged in sparingly if at all). Perhaps most impressive about the book is that McAfee is able to present several solutions to one problem and present to the reader how these solutions would play out in the real world: take for example his discussion of the variety of auction formats available for businesses or the bargaining solutions available for negotiations between a union and a large corporation. This book is also loaded with poignant examples from business throughout this century. Particularly useful in this book is McAfee's discussion about industrial analysis: this chapter would be useful for any manager who wants to know what forces (new entrants, buyer bargaining power, supplier bargaining power, substitute products, rivalry, and complements) should be kept in mind when making business decisions. McAfee has written a terrific book and has every reason to believe his book indeed fulfills a niche before neglected by writers.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 17, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The best description I can come up with is "MBA in a book." However I think that title has been applied to many books of much less quality so I need something better.
McAffee provides an "in-depth introduction" to business economics, including competition (as the name implies), pricing strategy, statistics, industry analysis, organizational design, incentives, and more. For anyone looking to get their feet wet in business, or just to understand what the marketing and business guys are talking about (or think they're talking about), this book is excellent!
If you're looking for a fluffly book with executive summaries, this is not the book for you. If you want a book packed with content that will improve your nascent business acumen, this is it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Loyd E. Eskildson HALL OF FAME on August 31, 2014
Format: Paperback
McAfee's book arose out of teaching and his consulting work. He believes strategy normally does not receive enough emphasis on pricing, litigation/antitrust, and the need for a company's vision to be unique. The book is an attempt to replace Porter's seminal work, but doesn't accomplish that. Moreover, some of his examples are badly dated - eg. the excessive praise for AOL in its opening chapter.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By brightSnow on March 11, 2006
Format: Paperback
McAfee presents the issues facing modern businesses with subtleties and explanations that are essential for maneuvering intelligently in a complex competitive environment.

Instead of merely dumbing down the ideas to simplistic charts, the book lucidly explains the best modern thinking from economics and how it relates to real business situations. The author, one of the leading American experts in business economics, is well-suited to the task, since he is co-edited the top journal in the discipline for a decade. Nevertheless, he never loses sight of the practical issues and the text is packed with (a seemingly endless array) of fascinating practical examples.

The writing is clear, punchy, and often funny.

If you want to get an accessible, useful view of business economics that is much deeper than what is offered to the typical MBA, this book is a must.
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