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10 Best Books on Business Strategy to Read in 2024

10 Best Books on Business Strategy to Read in 2024. such as Built to Last, The Innovator’s Dilemma, Crossing The Chasm, Good Strategy Bad Strategy
Welcome to an insightful journey through the '10 Best Books on Business Strategy,' written by Muhiuddin Alam on the book recommendations and reviews site,

Over the years as a leading authority on literary expertise, I've created numerous articles on the topic of 'Business and Investing Books', many of which can be found on this site.

I have received many requests to recommend some of the business strategy books. In response, I'm pleased to offer my expert recommendations in this article.

I will recommend you best books on business strategy in this post, which is based on my in-depth study and testing in this field. Such as Built to Last, The Innovator’s Dilemma, Crossing The Chasm, Good Strategy Bad Strategy, Your Strategy Needs a Strategy, and Blue Ocean Strategy.

These aren't the only books on this topic. Below, you'll find 10 books with detailed descriptions of each of these outstanding resources, helping you make well-informed decisions to choose the best business strategy books.


10 Best Books on Business Strategy to Read in 2024

2020-2021 has been a crazy year, and it’s understandable if reading the best business strategy books is slipping down your priority list. But that means you may have missed some of these gems.

From casual readers to bookworms, there are books for all kinds of people. Case studies, step-by-step guides, and leadership advice. I'm a bookworm, and I've read hundreds of corporate strategy books in my life and learned a lot from them.

The following is a list of my favorite best strategy books, but it has been compiled based on the opinions of highly engaged readers of Hope you find something in there that resonates! 

1. Built to Last 


Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies by Jim Collins  & Jerry I Porras

After reading it, I expressed my surprise that this book has such a high score?

Two authors made a point of their own and then spent years and hundreds of thousands of words proving it.

Simply put, "the point of view is correct, the proof is complete, and it is useless", "time teller, bell ringer, business comparison, development comparison, corporate culture, and many other things are correct, but for some readers who want to learn from it. 

It's arguably not helpful at all, except to give us a shot in the arm" Look at those companies that were shabby in the beginning, but they all succeeded later, man, you're much better than them, let go of your doubts, and fight! "It is very passionate. 

The problem is that when you stop and think about it, apart from excitement, what else do you get?

The author writes about the difficulties encountered in the early stage of the company as if playing a family if comparing the CEOs of the company in the early stage.

But what I want to say is that it is still a classic. After all, I can roughly divide the people who have read the book into two types:
  • A. People who are relatively successful at this stage. They will tell themselves, "Look, I'm so much better than the stupid CEOs of the comparison companies, and now I know that I have to make rules and make good clocks, and now my company is really going to last forever! "
  • B. is a relatively failed and confused person at this stage. They will pat their foreheads and realize, "Isn't this what I want to see!" I would also recommend it to my employees to let them know how promising we are. 
Since companies like Procter & Gamble and 3M didn't know what they were doing in the early days, my ignorance is more forgivable now, and it's even a good sign! marvelous! 

I also recommend it to my opponents, let them know how open-minded and potential I am, and don't look down on me! The a classic example of how to write a bestseller. Personal opinion, maybe one-sided, spicy, but hopefully someone likes bitter medicine and spicy meal.

2. The Innovator’s Dilemma 


The Innovator's Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail by Clayton M. Christensen 

The logic of this book: Some large companies cannot successfully take advantage of disruptive technological changes, not because they are unconscious, have insufficient technical capabilities, do not develop relevant products, do not have suitable talents, and do not invest resources; 

but because: 
  1. The goal is still locked in the present There is a market, and new technologies are still used to meet the needs of existing users and compete for a share in the existing market, resulting in the illusion of "no market" for new products -- the market for disruptive new products is often different from existing products, and it is necessary to wait or excavation. (Similar to "category theory") 
  2. Involve new products within the framework of the existing growth rate -- the market for new products must be small in the initial stage, and it is not appropriate to use the old operating model or target the overall growth rate. 
Opinions put forward in the book
  • a. Establish a relatively independent team: 
  1. Moderate size - appropriate amount of resources invested, which can not only ensure development but also have a limited impact on the overall growth rate; 
  2. Team "autonomy" - the operation of disruptive products Different from the original product; 
  • b. Take equity/acquisition of small companies. 
How to run this new business: Data shows that forecasts for disruptive products are often inaccurate, in part because forecasts are based on existing conditions. The time and scale of disruptive products are unpredictable. So rather than "operation", it is more about "learning" and "trial and error". 

Regarding whether to be a pioneer company or a latecomer, the book points out that each has advantages and disadvantages, and there is no conclusion. "Disruptive technology should be framed as a marketing challenge, not a technological one."

3. Crossing The Chasm 


Crossing the Chasm: Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers by Geoffrey A. Moore 

The structure of this book is very Western, and from a certain perspective, it is like a scientific paper: it describes a phenomenon that cannot be explained by a traditional model, and then proposes a new model (the gap model), using a large number of examples to explain the phenomenon. 

Analytical interpretation (early mass-pragmatist behavioral analysis), then deduction (Normandy way and overall product), very rigorous.

The key to this book is an understanding of the early mass-pragmatist model of behavior, which is an important theoretical basis for the methodology that follows in this book.

Each of us has the experience of a pragmatist. In our work, we are more willing to use those products that rank first and second in the market. In essence, we want to control the risk. No one wants to be a guinea pig. Some work rhythms are disrupted, and we are afraid of falling into chaos.

Fear of getting into chaos is a huge obstacle for new technology products to pragmatists, and even with new features, it can't surpass the leading products on the market in terms of completeness and reliability.

How to bridge the gap? The method proposed by the author does re-emphasize the characteristic that pragmatists are afraid of chaos, find the painful point of the pragmatist's existing workflow, dig out a market segment, and use this as a breakthrough - "What matters is not in the blank market. of consumers, but the significant impact of the painful experiences of those consumers.”

Dig into a blank market segment where you are more likely to be the dominant player in the market, you can get pragmatists out of confusion and give them greater assurance than other products, and this is the solution given by the author.

Also based on this characteristic of pragmatism, the author derives the concept of the overall product. What pragmatists need is a structural solution.

The target customer profiling in the book is a good way to make demands, using natural language to describe how an appropriationist customer works before using a new product and how it works after using it, based on behavioral traits (customers should Never get into a mess), an interesting approach to deriving requirements.

Although it is a book about marketing, it is actually very useful for implementing things in daily work. How to implement your ideas, methods, and new processes in an organization will inevitably encounter various resistances. 

After reading this book, you will revisit it from a systems perspective and find solutions, because most people are pragmatists.

4. Good Strategy Bad Strategy 


Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard Rumelt 

The book was recommended in class, but to be honest I don't think it's a good book. . . A large part of the reason should be attributed to the fact that the teacher made a wonderful summary of the first chapter of this well-written book in class, which caused me to be very disappointed after reading the content after reading with full expectations.

The biggest problem is the case. There are relatively few business cases, and many cases come from war and history. I once wondered if I was reading a book on the study of success. The author Rumelt was also called a "strategist among strategists". Thinking like this is more like success learned. . .

In addition to the small number of cases, more importantly, the descriptions of the cases in this book are too sloppy compared to those used in class. It is obvious that the information has been deliberately filtered, and the author often only states part of the facts of the case in order to prove his point. 

Without being able to see the full picture of the case, it is difficult for readers to experience the real confusion as a decision-maker, let alone think about the causes and consequences behind various business decisions.

For example, in the case of Global Crossing Corporation, in my opinion, the industrial structure is not the core of the problem, because according to the author's description, the growth expectation of downstream demand is the key basis for supporting the stock price to rise. 

If the author really predicted at that time that the growth of submarine cable data transmission would be much lower than that of land transmission, and the price drop of servers would cause most Internet companies to place servers around the world without the need for submarine cables, 

then I must say It is impossible to make such a conclusion that is diametrically opposed to the consensus of the market as he said, at least it cannot be obtained by doing some bullshit five forces analysis, which requires a very deep understanding of the industry and insight.

The discussion of the financial crisis broke me even more. The view that the financial crisis was only attributed to herd mentality left me scratching my head. If I refer to Dalio's explanation of the economic cycle, I would feel that the author's discussion is too thin and ignores it. 

Most of the other reasons are more important. This way of interpreting the financial crisis is very similar to the documentary "Steal Yourself" made by the leftist virgins. In order to speak from the standpoint of the masses, only part of the facts are told. Unscrupulously looking for evidence, why do I get angrier the more I say it. Forget it. . .

In general, the positioning of this book should be a public reading. As a business school student, reading this book will not be enjoyable, and the inspiration is really limited.

Of course, it may also be that I have too little experience to realize the real wisdom behind this book. If this is the case, I hope that I can grow up quickly, find out how naive I am at this time, and find that the content in the book is so useful, and I will be slapped in the face earlier.

5. Your Strategy Needs a Strategy 


Your Strategy Needs a Strategy: How to Choose and Execute the Right Approach by Martin Reeves, Knut Haanaes, and Janmejaya Sinha 

It took me nearly two months to read "Your Strategy Needs a Strategy", and I have to say that it is an excellent strategy book, I highly recommend it to colleagues in the Strategy Department and interested friends to learn and practice it. 

Large companies need to execute a variety of strategies, assessing the business environment in which they operate based on the dimensions of predictability, plasticity, and environmental harshness, selecting the best type of strategy, and evaluating the company's existing practices. 

In general, the five strategic archetypes under the strategy palette are as follows
  1. Classical strategy: analysis-planning-execution, making it bigger; 
  2. Adaptive strategy: change-selection-promotion, seeking speed; 
  3. Visionary strategy 
  4. Shaping strategy: attracting-coordinating-development, coordination; 
  5. Reshaping strategy: coping-saving-growth, survival. 
Different strategic choices have different requirements for company information, innovation, organizational form, and culture. 

In the implementation, four strategies of separation, transformation, self-organization, and external ecosystem of ambidextrous innovation should be adopted as the application of environmental diversity and dynamics. 

Of course, the basic colors and combinations of the five strategies are only the basic building blocks of the company, and when they are considered in a broader context, the difference and absoluteness of each standard strategy will be weakened. 

Rather, the strategic palette provides a language, logic, and mindset that enables leaders to develop the right set of competencies to chart the light and shade on the strategic palette, based on the context and the company's applicability to the whole...

In this process, leaders, as mappers of multiple strategic dynamic combinations, should play the roles of diagnosers, segmenters, disruptors, mentors, marketers, questioners, receivers, and facilitators.

6. Blue Ocean Strategy 


Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim & Renée Mauborgne 

Blue Ocean Strategy was co-authored by two INSEAD professors of strategic management, Kim and Mauborgne. It is one of the most popular management bestsellers at the moment. 

"Blue Ocean Strategy" is a book I read on the subway. Since I have had to take the subway to different places all day recently, I have a lot of time to read a book. Now I read the travel magazine "Blog". 

Reading books on the subway is more casual, but it is also very interesting because you can be like no one else, you don't have to worry about what others think of you, you don't have to look at others, you don't have to think about whether you have a chance to jump off the track, the only bad thing is that you occasionally sit pass the stop.

In fact, many of the sayings about the blue ocean strategy can be applied in many places. For example, who knows that creating a blue ocean is much better than being in a red ocean, and who does not know the strategic significance of creating a blue ocean. 

However, the book uses a large number of cases to explain The strategic height of the blue ocean, in fact, in the book, there is no systematic explanation of how to create a blue ocean for an enterprise.

Most of the meaning of this book, I think, is to change your mind about how to get the most possible profit in the most unlikely places, and occupy the market that no one wants to occupy. This is also the case. 

This book does not teach you how to create a blue ocean. Most of it is about how to change people's concepts, the thinking of superiors and subordinates, and even the "interpersonal" that Chinese people are good at. relationship” is also described at length.

The deepest impression of the book is the analysis of competitors and the estimation of its own strength, and then to find out the blue ocean, those charts, to see their strengths and weaknesses at a glance.

Most of the time, you can't get the sword of Shangfang just by reading a book. Most of the good books are just to trigger your thinking, especially management books. It is enough to trigger your thinking. 

You can't expect to pass a book. The book can guide the enterprise, or take the case in the book to change the working state that you have always been in.

A book that can bring you systematic thinking and straighten out previously cluttered thoughts is enough. This is a good book.

7. Competing Against Luck 



Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer Choice by Clayton M. Christensen, Karen Dillon, Taddy Hall, and David S. Duncan

When I read the title of the book, I felt a little strange. What is the competition with luck, isn't luck just fate?

After reading it, it turns out that this is how to find the reason behind the user's use of the product, find the reason, and then innovate, the success rate will be higher, which is the so-called victory over luck.

At the same time, it also made me realize that there are many misunderstandings in the original product thinking, such as big data analysis, user characteristics, user surveys, etc., which can be misleading. 

It may be that we get lost, but we always enjoy it, and we have never found the real reason behind the user's use of the product.

What this book wants to tell us is how to gain insight into the real reasons why users use a product, which is not only about needs but also intertwined with social, emotional, and other factors. 

The user hires a product in a specific context to achieve a certain progressive task, referred to as task theory - to discover the task the user needs to complete.

The author, Christensen, used this theory to complete "How Do You Measure Your Life" to explain the causal relationship between personal choices and success and happiness.

There is an example of a milkshake in the book. You will focus on the improvement of the product, changing the taste, shape, appearance, etc. These effects will not bring significant growth to the product. 

And task thinking, you will find that users who drive in the morning buy milkshakes to facilitate driving, and sucking, pass the boring time and breakfast problems, and don't care about health problems at all. 

In the evening, the fathers who buy milkshakes are the fathers who pick up and drop off their children, in order to reflect the father's love, while avoiding the anxiety of other desserts and the time problem of going to the playground. 

You will also find that there are different types of product competitions in the morning and evening, breakfast in the morning, and children's toys, playgrounds, etc. in the evening. 

With this discovery, we improved the consistency and taste for users in the morning, solved the problem of users having breakfast while driving, and launched a small cup type for users in the evening, and the sales of the products were immediate.

The same product, through task thinking, under different backgrounds, users have different purposes for using it, and the competing products faced by the product itself are also changing. 

We need to learn to observe clues, listen to the voices of users, constantly think about what causes what, and build product stories in order to discover the social, emotional, and other factors behind the product, and to accurately locate the functional improvement points of the product. 

With this as the goal, a series of processes are created, so that users can obtain a good product experience, and the product can gain a competitive advantage.

To summarize the key points of task theory:
  1. The employment plans in the context of specific tasks are different and can be non-homogeneous products;
  2. The program will be intertwined with function, society, and emotion;
  3. It is not suitable for tasks or transactions or products with a broad definition and an unclear theme.
Finally, this theory is not only applicable to business, but also helpful to study, life, and work. Discovering the tasks that users need to complete can make our lives happier.

8. Good to Great 


Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don't by Jim Collins

My favorite conclusion came at the very beginning (Chapter 2) when the author's team surveyed managers of great companies, "managers who achieved leapfrog companies talked about luck many times", which is not the "conclusion" the author wanted, and not the center of the book, I just like the fact that it supports my own "fatalism".

The so-called management and the problems encountered by the CEO of a modern company and the commander of an ancient army of 300,000 are similar. No commander can win a war just by reading a military book, so it is impossible for a company to have a certain “know-how” to succeed.

There are many bright spots in this book. As a rigorous research project that lasted for many years, it revealed many statistical laws. It summarizes the paths great companies have traveled and what they have in common. But even the author admits that without these characteristics a company is bound to be great.

As someone who has never run a company, this kind of book is similar to a motivational book, because the features mentioned are so straightforward, and the author will cite many successful examples to nag: "It works. , you see that XXXX has succeeded, if you don’t do it, you will die, and you see that XXXX has failed like this”; but for managers who have faced reality, this book will be a good reference.

My recommendation is that the chapters "Level 5 Managers" and "First and Last" are very good, and the later chapters can only be said to be better if you read them.

9. Playing to Win 


Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works by A.G. Lafley & Roger L. Martin

Businesses deliver unique value by "carefully choosing a range of different activities", this is what Porter said in his book "Competitive Strategy", and AG is also the author of "Playing to Win", it can be said that from the practice level, which confirms this theory.

Many people have heard of Procter & Gamble, and at the same time, as a company I have worked for for more than 6 years, I have a good understanding of its culture and strategy. After resigning from Procter & Gamble and starting the road of entrepreneurship, reading this book again, the feeling is very different!

The most direct feeling is Entrepreneurship, foreshadowing!

The book cites many examples of the practice process of P&G's brand, giving people a real feeling. Behind every brand is a series of "choices"!

In the book, the core point of view is how to make corresponding strategies that meet the goals through corresponding methods.

In terms of specific operations, 5 questions can help open the mind:
  • What is the vision?
  • How is the market positioned?
  • How can we win?
  • What ability must be?
  • How does the management system match?
This thought process, and the approach to supporting strategy, is the source of differences between companies.

How to control this rhythm and make the right choice is a process of constantly scrutinizing these five questions.

Generally speaking, this book is suitable for those who are doing business or products and want to make products into big brands but feel that they have encountered some bottlenecks. The method itself, regardless of the enterprise, but in stages.

10. The Art of Strategy 


The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist's Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff

The essential difference between science and art is that the content of science can be learned in a systematic and logical way, while the cultivation of strategic art can only be carried out by relying on examples, experience, and practice”; “Game theory as a discipline is far from complete, (So) a lot of strategic thinking is still an art.” 

By nature, people tend to be self-centered, focusing only on their own understanding and their own needs. But the art of strategy requires, not to be self-centered, to understand what others stand, think, and value, and use that understanding to guide action.”

Sailing provides a great opportunity to observe an interesting counter-example to the “follow the leader” strategy. The sailing boats that lead in performance usually copy the strategy of following the boats. If a trailing boat changes course, the leading boat will do the same. 

In fact, even when the trailing boat adopts an apparently inferior strategy, the leading boat will do so. Why? Because sailing is not the same as dancing in a ballroom, where it's useless to get close, only to win at the end. If you are ahead, the surest way to stay ahead is to see what others do and do what you do.

Obviously, you shouldn't gamble with these poker champions, but when should you gamble? Groucho Marx once said that he rejected any club that accepted him as a member. By the same token, you may be reluctant to accept bets offered by others. 

Even if you win an auction, you should be worried about it. Because the fact that you are the highest bidder means that others don't think the item is worth the price you paid for it. Winning an auction only to find yourself overbid is a phenomenon known as the winner's curse. 

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