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The Boston Consulting Group on Strategy: Classic Concepts and New Perspectives Hardcover – April 28, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Essential reading for anyone with a serious interest in strategy." (Long Range Planning, 40/2007)

From the Inside Flap

This remarkable anthology of articles on strategy and management is an essential companion for executives facing the need to rethink their businesses. Whether the task is to defeat new or entrenched competitors, it is often necessary to go back to the basics and to consider radical departures. The Boston Consulting Group on Strategy will help readers do both because it contains seminal concepts about reducing costs and gaining market share, as well as new thinking on the power of networks, pricing and segmentation, and the impact of ever cheaper communications and distribution.

With the exception of several articles that appeared first in the Harvard Business Review, most of the pieces in this book are "Perspectives," short essays that were originally published by The Boston Consulting Group for its clients. The ideas they present were almost all developed and tested in the course of working with clients worldwide to improve both position and performance.

The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is regarded as one of the premier management consulting firms. The Financial Times once credited its founder, Bruce Henderson, with inventing the field of corporate strategy. The themes that run through BCG's ideas—the importance of competitive advantage, the need to "break compromises" and "de-average" the numbers, the value of time, and the power of seeing second or third order causes—are more relevant than ever because the need for effective strategy has never been greater. This is a book for managers who want to understand how the business world really works and how to change the course of their companies based on that understanding.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 2 edition (April 28, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471757225
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471757221
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.3 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #92,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 59 people found the following review helpful By HarvardAlum321 on April 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book is just a collection of essays/reflections on the management consulting profession. These essays are from the 1990s, so they seem a bit dated with all of the technological advances in the past 15 years. I wouldn't recommend it.
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41 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Z045873 on January 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is filled with both well known business "facts" as well as unconventional perspectives. It is an excellent book; however it is a rather difficult read. I consider myself to be an above average reader particularly with business jargon, but still I had trouble. The purpose of reading is to expand your mind and grow. Overall this is a book that I would recommend. Be prepared for a challenge.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Kim Ehrman on October 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This collection of publications is incredibly interesting to the business enthusiast. Even Bruce Henderson's publications from the 1970's remain thought-provoking and -transforming today.

This is a dense read. I cannot read very much at one time. However it is grouped by subject, so you can jump around different chapters without consequence.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Bart Norre on February 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is an interesting book if you want to see how strategy was treaten 20, 30 or even 40 years ago. Certainly for students a nice book. A second issue which is too often recurrent in this type of books, certainly useful for fortune 500 companies. For my own practice as a consultant for SMB I could not really find anything usefull.
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22 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Elijah Chingosho on September 30, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is an outstanding book on various ideas on strategy. The book provides some classical and new insights, concepts, tools and perspectives for effective strategy formulation and implementation.

The Boston Consulting Group has been responsible for a number of major management consulting innovations and concepts, such as "time-based competition," "deconstruction," and "capability-driven competitive strategies" and highlighting the importance of competitive advantage. Today BCG is among the largest and most profitable management consulting companies in the world. It is regarded as one of the premier management consulting firms.

The book reeks of the outstanding ideas developed by this iconic consulting firm which the company executive and students of strategy will find very useful and perceptive. The book, among other things, shows how to analyse a firm in the marketplace, formulate and execute an effective strategy, getting people excited about the strategy, how to use strategy to take advantage of opportunities, among other informative ideas.

I strongly recommend people to read this high-quality book.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jackal on December 3, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This is a book consisting of a irregularly issued newsletters by BCG, the management consulting company. Most newsletters are several decades old. Back when management consultants were more thoughtful, BCG had a clear impact on the field of strategic management. However, that means going back to the 1970s and earlier. Henderson's writings from this time are interesting. There are more recent pieces in this book as well (i.e. 1990s) but they are in no way introducing new ideas. For people with an historical interest this book has value. Otherwise, I don't think many people are really keen on reading old newsletters.

Had the book been edited and provided some more insight into the historical operations of BCG, the book would have been more interesting. As it stands now, it is just a cut and paste of old newsletters. Hardly anyone is really going to read the book. It is just created to increase the credibility of BCG in an age where management consultants are under profit margin pressure. (Note: I have nothing against BCG. It is one of the best management consultancies around.) So if a bit more thought would have gone into the book it would have deserved three stars (i.e. good book for a very niche segment). Now, I just give it two stars. Not recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cheng Yi Chiao on July 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The articles compiled are somewhat dated but the concept behind it is still very relevant in today's marketplace. It's somewhat strange that this book does not enjoy the popularity of other strategic texts such as porters competitive strategy. Many of the ideas are still used by companies today and are considered necessary practise.

you are in consulting, strategy and transformation, this book is of value to understand historical reasons and predict current and future trends.
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By Silvio Vianna on August 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book has a great review of the very important part of literature of strategy. The articles from Rumelt and others that used BCG theory is significant to understand how the new organizations must attend to actual demmands.
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