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Tag Archives: strategy
To see the world anew, an older way of seeing must be cast aside.
The enemy of insight is unconscious constraint. What keeps us from seeing in new ways is the burden of the old, so softly holding one’s mind in a rut that we are unaware of its smothering embrace. Insight draws its
Aribitrary goals don't help generate good strategies
A strategy structures the situation, providing guidance as to how to best use the resources and insights available. Useful strategic objectives are not simply the echo of ambition; they reflect an understanding of the forces at work and seek a balance between what is desired and what is possible.
The forces at work deconstructing physical book retailing
Visiting a closing Borders bookstore, the forces eroding physical bookstores are exemplified by three of us in the check-out line. They are on-line book retailing, big-box store discounting, uncaptured value, and the costs of overuse.
Distributed knowledge resists imitation
Among strategy researchers, Jeffrey Dyer has done one of the cleanest jobs of putting isolating mechanisms under the microscope. Jeff started his investigations of Japanese automobile makers when he was a doctoral student at UCLA, working under the direction of
Industry matters but strategy matters more
When I studied economics in the early 1970s, the totally dominant point of view in academic circles was that differences in profit rates were industry effects. High profits were due, it was argued, to muted competition taking place behind high
Uncertain imitability explains most stylized facts about industry
In 1982, Steven Lippman and I offered a very general logical answer to the puzzle of sustained differences in efficiency or effectiveness. Our theory—uncertain imitability—argued that the inability to understand and explain the sources of efficiency differences is precisely what
The spurious relationship between market share and profitability
The strategy field’s first systematic theory about these sustained differences in performance attributed them to learning and market-share. Indeed, during the late 1970s, almost every book, paper, and address on business strategy put learning and market-share on center stage. Today
Introducing a series on fundamental research in business strategy
For me, there is a special excitement in fundamental questions—their childlike simplicity covers deep mysteries. A student once asked physicist John Wheeler: “What is time?” Wheeler replied, “Time is what prevents everything from happening at once.” Just as time is
Competitors who exploit human frailties do not contribute to society
In 1956 Chairman Mao declared a new openness in the Chinese Communist Party. He echoed the Soviet Party’s criticisms of Stalin and declared “Let a hundred flowers bloom.” It wasn’t long before criticism arrived. Wall-posters and speakers began to complain