Books – Business Strategy

From Good to Great (Jim Collins, 2001).
Strongly recommended. Fantastic book by author of “Built to Last”. Develops compelling ideas of Level 5 Leadership, getting right team on bus before setting out, etc. Best management book in a decade.

Inside the Tornado (Geoffrey Moore, 1995)
An excellent book building on the earlier “Crossing the Chasm”. This is a basic primer on how (technology) tornadoes happen and how to ride one.

Living on the Faultline (Geoffrey Moore, 2000)
Interesting read; written at height of dot-com fever, so some skepticism required. Talks about evolution through high-tech growth phase (company & sector) and builds on concepts from “Chasm” and “Tornado”. Some good “how-to” strategies and tactics, and discussions on moving through market development lifecycle with different cultural models.

The Art of the Long View (Peter Schwartz, 1987)
Discusses value/process of “Scenario Planning” for business/strategic planning purposes.

The E-Myth Revisited (Michael Gerber, 1995)
Excellent book for small business owners — equates structure requirements to planning to franchise business and build in processes, systems, etc. Very good read; lots of good frameworks for all businesses.

The Machine That Changed the World (Womback et al, 1989)
Best manufacturing book available; studies how the Toyota manufacturing system has profoundly changed economics of manufacturing worldwide.

War and Anti-War (Alvin Toffler, 1993)
Analysis of how war (and anti-war) are changing as world moves from 2nd wave (industrial) to 3rd wave (informational). Interesting read in light of current emphasis on military transformation process.

Startup.Com (film, 2001)
A “must see” if you followed the industry trajectory (and who didn’t?). This is a documentary of a real, well funded, high profile start-up. Over the course of more than a year, the film-makers follow the growth and the subsequent crash and burn. Absolutely fascinating.

The Pirates of Silicon Valley (film, 1999)
This film tells the story of the early PC industry, and the growth and intertwining of Apple, Microsoft, and Jobs and Gates. Definitely worth renting this movie.

The Innovator’s Dilemma (Clayton Christensen, 1997)
Excellent read, with lots of very detailed industry explanations (disk drive, computers, excavating equipment). Differentiates between disruptive and sustaining technologies, the importance of remaining open to failures, and different organizational metrics when introducing truly disruptive technologies.

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