Customer Reviews: Kellogg on Strategy : Concepts, Tools, and Frameworks for Practitioners
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This concise guide to strategy offers an excellent basic introduction to business strategy. David Dranove and Sonia Marciano not only outline their own benefits-minus-cost ("B - C") approach to strategy; they also usefully summarize the essentials of other widely accepted approaches, most notably that of Harvard Business School professor Michael E. Porter. They write lucidly, avoid academic jargon and stay focused on the essentials without burdening the reader with unnecessary detail. They illustrate their discussion with examples drawn from actual business successes and failures and two case studies, one from the airline industry and the other from the health-care industry. We recommend this book to beginning managers looking for a strategy primer. Experienced strategists can turn to it for a refresher course in fundamental business truths.
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The last time I checked, Amazon and its online partner Borders sell more than 53,000 different books on the general subject of strategy. Presumably this number will continue to increase as organizations become more actively involved with formulating and then executing an effective strategy.

What we have here is one of the volumes which comprise a series produced by faculty members at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and on faculties elsewhere. In this instance, co-authored by Kellogg's Daniel Dranove and Sonia Marciano, Institute Fellow and Senior Lecturer at The Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness at the Harvard Business School.

I feel obligated to suggest at the outset that none of the volumes in this series is an "easy read." On the contrary, each requires but will generously reward a careful consideration of its contents which are carefully organized within nine chapters which range from "Getting Ready to Do Strategy" (with Samsung providing the illustrative example) to "Two Examples of Strategy in Action: Southwest Airlines and the Chicago Hospital Market." Case studies in and of themselves can be very informative. In this volume, the use of these three and others is especially effective as a means by which to illustrate both common business situations as well as the key points made in the article in which each case study is included.

Those who read this book are provided with an abundance of concepts, tools, and frameworks from which they can select those which are most appropriate and then, key point, make whatever modifications as may be necessary to accommodate the specific needs, interests, resources, and objectives of a given organization.

For whom will this volume be most valuable? There are several constituencies which include undergraduate and graduate students if business and their instructors as well as those who have recently earned a business degree and are now embarked on their career. Moreover, I think this book will be of substantial benefit to more experienced executives (regardless of the size or nature of their organization) who require -- and can handle -- a rigorous, at times daunting examination of how to formulate and then implement an effective strategy, and, how to obtain and then sustain support of it throughout the given enterprise. There are several reasons why such initiatives seldom succeed, among them being the inherent difficulty of charting an appropriate course and then remaining on it. Even the best of maps and Horatio Nelson at the helm cannot save a sinking ship.

Those who share my high regard for this book are urged to check out Henry Mintzberg and co-authors' Strategy Safari, Lawrence Hrebiniak's Making Strategy Work, Vijay Govindarajan and Chris Trimble's 10 Rules for Strategic Innovators, and Alfred Marcus' Big Winners and Big Losers as well as The Strategy-Focused Organization.
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on October 26, 2009
This is pretty much the easiest to understand and comprehend book on strategy. It was written by the faculty of one of the definitive schools on strategy. Do I need to say more? Lets put it this way, read this before taking any upper level class on brand strategy and you will be far ahead of the curve and will be able to bring more enlightened discussions into the classroom.
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on April 11, 2013
I bought this book for a class in my business school. The professor wasn't very good, the class wasn't very good, but this book actually was! I learned more from reading it than from the rest of the class.

It is simple, concise, but explains aspects of strategy in a relevant, real world easy to understand fashion. I think this book is effective and a good, not too long, not too technical read.
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on August 10, 2012
As a fan of Michael Porter's brilliant research and now classic books, I approve this book. You will be hooked by the end of the first chapter. I would not dare say this book can replace familiarizing yourself with Porter's work, but it supplements it perfectly. You learn by forming connections and this book will help you do just that. You won't regret buying this book, and you will be hooked by the end of the first chapter. Hopefully the fine folks over at Kellogg continue writing more books.
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on October 9, 2008
Even though this book is part of the MBA curriculum don't hold that against it. It absolutely rocks! It is written well and is so applicable to present day business situations it does not feel it was written by academics. I use this book to justify the tons of money I paid for this MBA at Kellogg. If you want to do this MBA and are not interested in Cost Accounting just read this book.
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on November 20, 2013
Having attended to the Kellogg's Competitive Strategy program in campus, the book is a great resource since it provides the theory on which the program is based. The best of this book is how it uses Economic principles and Mathematics to teach Strategy, instead of the classic "great concepts" books about Strategy. This book explains how Value is created and captured, and what a good Strategy does for a firm to capture most of the value that is created in the entire chain. I recommend it.
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on May 22, 2011
This is not a bible for strategy and actually it's a collection of some good articles, but you could find it useful when you flip it page after page. I read it twice completely and I have highlighted some useful points for strategy making or implementation. You won't regret to keep one in your briefcase.
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on July 22, 2014
Great product, as advertised!
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on February 10, 2016
Would not recommend.
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