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Profit Patterns by Adrian Slywotzky and David Morrison

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.

The book is very well structured in explaining the context of strategic profit pattern thinking, first explaining the profit patterns and then putting the patterns into practice, first by working through case studies and then how you can apply the ideas in the book to your own business.

The idea of profit pattern thinking is an important addition to strategy as it helps to make sense of a lot of the traditional work you do in strategy like PEST Analysis, Five Forces and the Value Chain. All those strategy models can be useful but there can be an element of doing the work and then thinking “So what? How has that moved the business forward?”

Profit Patterns provides a way to make sense of the information uncovered, just like the Picasso painting metaphor. It helps you to make sense of the changes that are happening providing the signals that you pick up match one or more of the patterns presented. This isn’t obvious as its happening although hindsight – just like a detective novel – shows that the clues were scattered around.

The book includes plenty to read but also makes use of diagrams to put over the message of the patterns. Some might regard them as crude (as in simple) but I like their simplicity. Although it’s a challenging read which makes you think as you turn the pages, it is well put together and very different from other books on business strategy.

I think it’s a shame that the authors or others haven’t take the idea of profit patterns and developed the concept further. I’m sure there is plenty of scope.

It is available to buy from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com.


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