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Dealing with Darwin: How Great Companies Innovate at Every Phase of Their Evolution Hardcover – December 29, 2005


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover (December 29, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591841070
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591841074
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,226,752 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

"Innovation" is one of the great buzzwords of management theory, but this treatise accords it a thoroughgoing analysis. Management consultant Moore, author of the bestselling Crossing the Chasm, argues that companies can escape the marginless hell of commodity and price competition only through innovations that differentiate their products from their competitors' in the minds of consumers. He elaborates a taxonomy of 15 "innovation types," from "disruptive" breakthrough technologies like Apple's iTunes to more mundane marketing innovations like hiring a sports superstar to endorse athletic shoes. Unlike many business futurists, Moore doesn't exalt innovation for its own sake, insisting it must be tied to concrete business goals. To help companies determine the right-and wrong-strategies for innovation, he develops an analytical framework that distinguishes emerging from mature market categories and "complex systems" companies that sell pricey customized projects to a few customers from "volume operations" companies that sell standardized products to the masses. Moore illustrates these ideas with real-world examples, biased toward tech-sector companies; an extended case study of innovation-management at networking leviathan Cisco Systems forms the backbone of the book. Moore's approach is somewhat theoretical and replete with diagrams that feature sine waves and fractals. Fortunately, his treatment remains lucid and commonsensical, and offers a wealth of insights for thoughtful managers.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“Less a cookbook than a detailed menu of meals that can be prepared to turn your competitors into dinosaurs. Brontosaurus burger, anyone?”
BusinessWeek

Dealing with Darwin provides a lucid and engaging perspective on managing innovation.”
—Ed Zander, CEO, Motorola

“Moore has delivered an innovative and instructive treatise on innovation.”
The Boston Globe

Dealing with Darwin is teeming with ideas and practical advice.... Moore’s new book is a very significant and valuable addition to the strategist’s bookshelf.”
Strategy and Leadership --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Managing Director, Geoffrey Moore Consulting
Venture Partner, Mohr Davidow Ventures
Chairman Emeritus, TCG Advisors, The Chasm Institute and The Chasm Group
Member of the Board of Directors, Akamai Technologies and several pre-IPO Companies


Geoffrey Moore is an author, speaker and business advisor to many of the leading companies in the high-tech sector, including Cisco, Cognizant, Compuware, HP, Microsoft, SAP, and Yahoo!.

Geoffrey divides his time between consulting on strategy and transformation challenges with senior executives and speaking internationally on those same topics. His latest book Crossing the Chasm the Third Edition is Moore's book for business leaders in the high-tech sector. This third edition brings Moore's classic work up to date with dozens of new examples of successes and failures, new strategies for marketing in the digital world, and Moore's most current insights and findings. Moore has written numerous other books including Escape Velocity, Moore's sixth book for business leaders in the high-tech sector. Inside the Tornado addresses the challenges faced by management when competing in hyper-growth markets and those faced by investors when managing a high-tech stock portfolio (The Gorilla Game). The two additional books both address the organizational challenges faced by established enterprises, in one case posed by the volatility of the technology sector overall (Living on the Fault Line), in the other by the need to reignite innovation in mature franchises (Dealing with Darwin). Escape Velocity rounds out these efforts in service to established enterprises by laying out a comprehensive program for engaging with next-generation trends while maintaining their core franchises.

Moore is an active public speaker who gives between 30 and 60 speeches per year, split roughly evenly between industry events and company-specific meetings. His speaking practice is global, addressing a spectrum of topics of interest to the high-tech sector, including high-tech market dynamics, business strategies, innovation, organizational development, and industry futures.

Earlier in his career, he was a principal and partner at Regis McKenna, Inc., a leading high tech marketing strategy and communications company, and for the decade prior, a sales and marketing executive in the software industry. He has a bachelor's degree from Stanford and a doctorate from the University of Washington, both in English Literature.

Customer Reviews

It's definitely worth reading and pondering.
American Bandersnatch
In all this is a gem of a book and a recommend reading for any top executive and top innovation strategist!
Brian Glassman
Geoffrey Moore writes about innovation as a means to keep up with an ever changing business environment.
Michael Hu

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Robert Morris HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 3, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Those who have read one or more of Moore's previous books (notably Inside the Tornado, Crossing the Chasm, and Living on the Fault Line) already know what a clear thinker and eloquent writer he is on the subject of high-tech markets, especially in terms of formulating appropriate strategies and tactics at a time when ever-accelerating change is the only constant within those dynamic markets. In Dealing with Darwin, he develops in much greater depth his response to this question: "How do great companies innovate at every phase of their evolution?" He is convinced (as am I) that there is a process of natural selection which determines why some companies prosper and most others do not.

Moore cites the concept of value disciplines which Michael Treacy and Fred Wiersema first introduced in their brilliant book, The Discipline of Market Leaders: Choose Your Customers, Narrow Your Focus, Dominate Your Market. He then identifies four clusters of innovation zones: Product Leadership, Customer Intimacy, Operational Excellence, and Category Renewal. The challenge for decision-makers in any organization (regardless of its size or nature) is to select innovation zone in which to establish and sustain "break away" separation from its competitive set. Moore suggests that this decision be made in terms of three factors:

1. Core competence: different organizations have different assets to exploit

2. Competitive analysis: different sets of competitors leave different openings to exploit

3. Category maturity: Different stages of the category-maturity life cycle reward different forms of innovation

Moore acknowledges an "odd pairing" of innovation leadership at the top with innovation "bubbling up from the bottom." Initiatives from both must be in proper alignment.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Mark P. McDonald VINE VOICE on February 12, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I have always enjoyed Geoffrey Moore's books which unfortunately trounced over the same old ground of the technology adoption cycle from different perspectives. This book starts out the same way, but unlike most business books gets better as it moves on.

Overall, parts two and three of this book should be required reading for anyone in Product Strategy, Product Marketing or General Management. Why, well these chapters provide a complete review of the major strategies and tactics involved in managing a business.

Section two talks about innovation strategies based on your company and the state of the market. The clear delineation of strategies for growth, mature, and declining markets provides a framework for plotting the structure and intent of your strategy.

In growing markets: disruptive, application, or product innovation.

In mature markets: Line extension, value engineering, enhancement, integration, marketing experiential, process or value migration innovation.

In declining markets: Organic renewal, acquisition renewal, or harvest and exit.

The clarity of Section II is a breath of fresh air as many strategy books either focus on only one of these types of innovation, or try to talk over your head with the idea that if you don't understand what they are saying, then you must not be strategic enough. This section is clear, directive, filled with examples and a great way to look at strategic direction and choice.

However, Section III of this book has the real gems and the culmination of Moore's ideas and thinking. Here Moore addresses the topic of how to reallocate and evolve the enterprise to achieve its strategy and innovation goals. This is not your typical discussion of change management and change readiness.
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Eric D. Brown VINE VOICE on October 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Ever see a book in the bookstore that catches your attention and you realize it was a best-seller sometime in the past? You realize you never picked it up to read it and decide that you should?

That's what happened when I ran across this book.

I heard about this book when it was released in 2005 and always meant to read it...but just never did. Whilst perusing the local Half-Price Books, I decided I'd pick it up and read it...because I'm a book nerd, there is a dinosaur on the cover and I saw what I thought were fractals in the book! :)

I got the book home and started reading...and I made it to page xii in the preface to the paperback edition before realizing I may have made a mistake buying this book. What happened?

I read this passage:

"The key message is simple. In order to achieve competitive advantage in a commoditizing market, one must innovate so dramatically as to create definitive seperation between your offers and those of the low-cost commoditizers. That means selecting a vector of innovation that can set you apart and investing intensely along that vector..."

Huh? The key message is simple but the author makes the message difficult to understand.

Why didn't Mr. Moore just say: To gain competitive advantage, you need to separate yourself from your competitor by choosing an innovation path and investing in that path.

After reading this passage, I was very very skeptical about the rest of the book. Especially after this passage immediately following the above one:

"Extract resource from context to fund core."

What does that mean?
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