KEY BENEFIT: Strategy and the Business Landscape is based on contemporary research in the field of strategy and adopts a value-focused, firm-centered perspective that promotes an analytical approach to strategy.
KEY TOPICS: Origins of strategy, mapping the business landscape, creating competitive advantage, anticipating competitive dynamics, sustaining superior performance, and choosing a corporate scope.
MARKET: This text is designed to help managers and business professionals master a body of analytical tools and develop an integrative point of view when making strategic choices.
Could be Better
By R. Lyubovitzky on Jun 22, 2007
The text is very heavy on the theory and provides a good background in the subject matter. Less pompous writing style could make it more readable. There are numerous spelling errors and instances of the words confused (tack instead of track, stricture instead of structure). Maybe upcoming editions will be better.
Really disappointing and useless.
By Acheteur on Oct 02, 2005
This book is really disappointing. When the it was delivered at home, I thought the box was empty: the book is as thin as a magazine! The content is very theorical, completely useless for executives. Maybe OK for students who have no clue at all about what strategy is, but definitely useless for executives.
By Dc on Nov 15, 2011
We're about halfway through this book in our class, and it is complete and utter garbage. It's poorly written, hard to understand, and the author seems to be going out of his way to be as obtuse as possible when explaining key concepts. He also fails to define many terms, even after highlighting the terms in the text. This book was clearly written for an academic audience, not students. So if you're a professor, please avoid assigning this book to your classes. It's slow torture. If you're a student, make sure to have a few cups of coffee handy before you start each chapter.
Sorry, but no
By Ds on Nov 06, 2011
This is one of the most poorly written books that I have been asked to read. I did not expect a strategic management book to be a page turner, but this takes comprehensible concepts and make them unreadable. The author has no cadence or flow to his writing. You have to reread a passage a couple of times to try to extract a pretty simple point. Save yourself some money; purchase a couple of reprints from the Harvard Business review, and you will be ahead of your peers who read this book.
High-level material, not recommended for students or people new to the subject
By Hamibab on Nov 16, 2010
Being an MBA student, I got to study this book for my "Strategic Management" course. I found the book material difficult to understand on my own without the help of the professor slides and explanations since the it touches different topics at a very high-level without going deeply into details and a good description of the tools and methods. Even the graphs are not self-explanatory and miss important information to help the reader understand them. In a nutshell, the book is not recommended for students or folks that are new to this subject but it might be useful for those who already have some preliminary knowledge on the topic.
Brilliant Structural Analysis
By Ruediger Schmidt on Jul 22, 2000
"Strategy and the Business Landscape" is a superb guide to the current field of strategic management, illustrated by recent and well-researched case studies. The brilliant structure and convincing presentation of state of the art literature is to the point and remains, to my mind, unmatched. Ghemawat's work has helped me tremendously to develop a more complete picture of the ever-evolving field of strategic management. At the same time, deficits are revealed and many original thoughts are introduced. This is what gives this textbook an inspiring and very valuable quality.
Nothing good to say, except
By R. Smith on Jul 14, 2008
the picture on the front cover is very nice. As far as the text goes, you are better off waiting for the movie. This is three or four pages of information drug out into a full book. Yikes.
By Aaron on Jul 08, 2014
Ghemawat offers quite a bit of good information. It was a cumbersome read at times, but the chapters are short enough to read more than once (and really, shouldn't you do that anyway?)
Should you this textbook if you're not a student?
By Jackal on Dec 03, 2010
This is a university textbook that might be relevant even if you're not a student. Read on: By reading this book you get an insight into what is currently (or maybe recently) taught at HBS's business policy course. This is important because once this course was taught by Michael Porter. He wrote Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors and Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance several decades ago. They were seminal books then and Porter has had a major influence on the field of business policy and strategy. These two books are still very readable because they talk about fundamental issues, which just doesn't go away with time. However, since those books are over 25 years old some things will be missing. That is where the current book fits in. The HBS course is still heavily dominated by Porter's ideas but by reading this book you get a good view what the people close to Porter's ideas consider as useful additions to the two original books. I would not recommend this book unless you've read Porter's two books. The current book is very brief and doesn't do full justice to the original ideas. I think this limits the potential customers to people in consulting, management, and academia that are really interested in the field of strategic management from a practical perspective. If you don't already know the field this book is not for you
Good Book Overall
By Manoj Batra on Sep 23, 2005
This book paints a good landscape of the evolution of strategy management over time. Even though the book has only 6 chapters the material is somewhat dense. I found myself doing a lot of re-reading to understand the details. Its extremely comprehensive though if you have a strong background in strategy and/or are pursuing your MBA and its you last semester. If you're the average joe blow who's trying the understand the basics of strategy management I'm sure there are easier books out there you may want to read.
Pros and Cons
By A. Ashkanani on Apr 28, 2011
Here is what I like and what I don't like about the book: Pros: - Short and concise. - Uses real world examples to relate them to theory and strategy concepts. - Uses different strategy frameworks, including: Porter's five forces, Tetra-Threat, Better-off and Best-Alternative tests. Cons: - Some of the graphs are hard to understand.