Understanding Michael Porter – Great Overview of Strategy and Competition

Anyone involved in strategy has been exposed to Michael Porter’s work, but we could all use a periodic review of his contributions to understanding competition and strategy. Joan Magretta has provided us with a great refresher course on the best of Porter in her book: Understanding Michael Porter.


If it has been a while since you have read Porter’s works, or if you are about to embark on strategic planning for your business and need to get grounded in what strategy is, this book is invaluable.

Go get a copy of the book and read it if you have any interest in strategy. Until you have the opportunity to sit down and read it, think through the following criteria as they apply to your business:

Five tests of a good strategy:

1) Unique Value Proposition

2) Tailored Value Chain

3) Trade Offs are Different from Rivals

4) Fit Across the Whole Value Chain

5) Continuity Over Time