- Hardcover: 592 pages
- Publisher: Free Press; 1 edition (June 1, 1998)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0684841460
- ISBN-13: 978-0684841465
- Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.8 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 86 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,869 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance 1st Edition
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About the Author
Michael E. Porter, one of the world's leading authorities on competitive strategy and international competitiveness, is the C. Roland Christensen Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School. In 1983, Professor Porter was appointed to President Reagan's Commission on Industrial Competitiveness, the initiative that triggered the competitiveness debate in America. He serves as an advisor to heads of state, governors, mayors, and CEOs throughout the world. The recipient of the Wells Prize in Economics, the Adam Smith Award, three McKinsey Awards, and honorary doctorates from the Stockholm School of Economics and six other universities, Porter is the author of fourteen books, among them Competitive Strategy, The Competitive Advantage of Nations, and Cases in Competitive Strategy, all published by The Free Press. He lives in Brookline, Massachusetts.
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The book describes the two primary methods of competitive advantage - differentiation and cost leader, and then proceeds to go through and explore the various components of the value chain that allow for the development and execution of the strategies.
Unfortunately, my edition was a first edition from 1985, so many of the examples were dated, and they applied well to the days of GE and ITT of the early 80's, and less to the Citigroups of this century. Not sure if Dr. Porter updated the book substantially since its intial printing - but I would recommend buying a newer edition if available.
Having said that, like graddaddy's wisom, the principles are important, and the theory solid. It translates to modern times with a little effort - which says a lot after 25 years.
There are almost zero recorded applications of the entire value chain approach in the literature - either the results are too valuable or it is too difficult - I am not sure which one is the case.
My PhD is on the use of value chains which are realigned to how the customer values the results (in FMCG supermarkets) then how each precursive step can be then optimised to suit the customer value equation. It is almost a line of best fit as optimising one step always impacts on the other steps - just as Heisenberg said for managing both location and velocity of things.
Great book - read it from end to end or you will not get the true benefits. What it needs is a second book that brings the cases to life with real world examples - you will have to wait for my book for that bonus.