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Best Business Book Reviews By Paul Simister

The Art of Profitability by Adrian Slywotzky

When I reviewed the book,

The Art of Profitability by Adrian Slywotzky,

on Amazon.co.uk, I rated it at the Four Stars level.

This means I think it is Good and Well Worth Reading.

Here is my book review.

A fable for different business models

This is a fascinating book which reveals twenty three different business models which an entrepreneur can use to build a profitable business.

What Is A Business Model?

It is the way your business creates value for customers and captures its fair share as profit. The best business models build their own momentum so success automatically leads to more success. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books

Hypercompetition by Richard A. D’Aveni – 5 Stars

The full title of this ground-breaking book on strategy by Richard D’Aveni with Robert Gunther is

Hypercompetition: Managing the Dynamics of Strategic Maneuvering“.

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I gave this book a rating of Five Stars. This means it is Excellent and Very Highly Recommended to the appropriate people.

Here is my book review.

A very important book that challenges the orthodoxy of strategic planning

This is a book I’ve wanted to read for many years and finally, in 2011 I did. Although it dates back to 1994 I’m very impressed about its ideas on strategy dynamics.

The view of business strategy presented in book is both scary and exciting.

The essence of strategy is building competitive advantage but in a world of hypercompetition, no competitive advantage is sustainable. [continue reading…]

in 3 – Your Strategic Positioning, Best Business Books

The full title of this book by Robert W Bradford and J Peter Duncan with Brian Tarcy is

Simplified Strategic Planning: The No-Nonsense Guide for Busy People Who Want Results Fast“.

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I gave the book a rating of Four Stars. This means I think it is Good and Well Worth Reading.

Here is my book review.

Very good book for SMEs who want or need to put together a strategic plan and then implement it.

The full title summarises this book well. It is a very good guide for the management team of any medium sized business which feels lost when thinking about business strategy.

Strategy is one of those words that nearly everyone feels obliged to use but it’s often difficult to put a finger on what it means when you are trying to think strategically or even to prepare a strategic plan. It is hard to see effective strategy in action although when you do see, you are wowed by how well everything fits together. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books

Three Steps Ahead by David Silverstein

The full title of this book by David Silverstein is

Three Steps Ahead: Thinking Strategically to Avoid Unintended Consequences“.

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I gave the book Four Stars. This means I think it is Good and Well Worth Reading.

Here is my book review.

Very interesting

By definition, it’s unusual to think about unintended consequences but these are the usually unwanted events that turn a good idea into a bad one. That’s obviously a mistake but how do you think about the unknown unknowns?

Unintended consequences are also a problem with performance measures and incentives. I remember blogging about the time when the Accident & Emergency departments in hospitals were set a target to see people in four hours and it resulted in the measure being gamed by leaving patients in ambulances and tying down these first responders to the hospitals instead of being free to deal with emergencies. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books

Strategy In Practice by Cliff Bowman

When I posted my review of

Strategy In Practice by Cliff Bowman

to Amazon.co.uk, I gave the book Four Stars.

This means I think it is Good and Well Worthwhile.

Here is my book review.

A very practical guide to strategy for senior managers

This is a book for managers who contribute to the strategy debates going on within their businesses. It is very different from many of the strategy texts which are either written for MBA style students or for strategy experts.

Cliff Bowman is Professor of Strategic Management at Cranfield University in the UK. He is also the co-author of probably my favourite book on strategy, “Competitive & Corporate Strategy” – a lost classic. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books

The full title of this book by Adrian Slywotsky and David Morrison is

The Profit Zone: How Strategic Business Design Will Lead You to Tomorrow’s Profits“.

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I gave the book Four Stars. This means I think it is Good and Well Worth Reading.

Here is my book review.

A superb book when it was published which is still valuable in 2015

This is a fascinating look at the power of business models to determine the success of a business.

The authors argue that the traditional sources of profit in many businesses and industries are broken. No longer can higher market share and market growth be assumed to “guarantee” financial success because there are many cases where high market share is unrewarded and where fast growing markets become profit traps. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books

The full title of this book by Adrian Slywotzky and David Morrison is

Profit Patterns: 30 Ways to Capture Profit for Your Business“.

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I rated this book as Four Stars. This means I think it is Good and Well Worth Reading.

Here is my book review.

An interesting way of making sense of your analysis to see the big picture

Profit Patterns begins with the interesting metaphor of business strategy is like Picasso’s paintings.

In the beginning, things were pretty straightforward. It was very clear what was happening in the picture but over time, it became more difficult to understand the paintings, the message, the pattern until in the end you were left guessing what Picasso was painting.

The idea of Profit Patterns is that with work, order can be found within the chaos provided you understand pattern thinking. This makes sense to me and the book represents a shift in perspective from Slywotzky’s earlier books Value Migration and The Profit Zone. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books

The full title of this book by Thomas Nagle and Reed Holden is

The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing: A Guide to Profitable Decision Making“.

This book has been revised a number of times and my review refers specifically to the Third Edition. I have recently bought the Sixth Edition.

In my review posted to Amazon.co.uk, I rated this book at the Five Stars level. It is Excellent (perhaps Brilliant is a better word) and is Very Highly Recommended to anyone who has to make pricing decisions in a reasonable sized business.

Here is my book review.

A superb review of pricing theory

Pricing is where your strategy is either tested and proven or fails. It is very much where the rubber meets the road.

The authors, Thomas Nagle and Reed Holden expertly walk a fine line that makes “The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing” work both as an academic textbook for MBA level students on a pricing module and as a guide for the serious practitioner of pricing who makes real decisions in a business. [continue reading…]

in 3 – Your Strategic Positioning, 4 – Lead Generation, 5 – Lead Conversion, Best Business Books

The full title of this often overlooked strategy book by Shiv Mathur and Alfred Kenyon is

Creating Value: Shaping Tomorrow’s Business“.

In my review at Amazon.co.uk, I rated this book as worthy of Five Stars. This means it is Excellent and Very Highly Recommended to appropriate readers.

Here is my book review.

A highly original look at how to differentiate products

This book could be the best strategy book you’ve never heard of.

It’s a fiercely original intellectual work which will challenge many of the traditional ways of thinking about business strategy. Unfortunately both authors have died so it can’t be updated beyond the second edition but Creating Value has lots of insight for any business strategist and especially anyone who is interested in differentiation.

It’s not the easiest of reads because it is so challenging to the mind. [continue reading…]

in 3 – Your Strategic Positioning, Best Business Books

The full title of this book by Nigel Greenwood is

The Six Things That All Customers Want: A Practical Guide to Delivering Simply Brilliant Customer Service“.

In my review posted to Amazon.co.uk, I rated this at the Four Stars level. This means I think it is Good and Well Worth Reading.

Here is my book review.

A good book but presented poorly in a kindle reader

This is a short, practical book with plenty of customer service tips that apply to large and small businesses and it’s priced very fairly.

There’s nothing exceptional here that will shock you if you think about the problems from the other side of the exchange, when you’re the buyer. [continue reading…]

in Best Business Books