The Mind of the Strategist by Kenichi Ohmae

Book Review The mind of the strategist Ohame The art of Japanese Business By Kenichi submitted by : Mantnder pal Singh, MBA (GEN), SEC -B About the author Kenichi Ohmae is a business and corporate strategist who developed the 3C’s Model. For twenty-three years, Dr.

Ohmae was a senior partner in Mckinsey ; Company, the international management consulting firm. As a co-founder of its strategic management practice, he served companies in a wide spectrum of industries, including industrial and consumer electronics, finance, telecommunications, food and chemicals.

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Born in 1943 in Kitakyushu, he earned a BS from Waseda University, an MS from the Tokyo Institute of Technology, and a doctorate in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and subsequently worked as a senior design engineer for Hitachi. He then Joined McKinsey ; Company, becoming a senior partner, developing and running the company’s Japan operations for a number of years.

Ohmae has written a number of books, including “The Mind of the Strategist”, The End of the Nation State and The Borderless World. He now lives in Tokyo with his wife and two sons.

About the book A Masterful Analysis of Company, Customer, and Competition “In many ways, Ohmae can be considered the modern reincarnation of a much older guru, Adam Smith. ” -Journal of Marketing “A fascinating window into the mind of one of Japan’s premier strategists..

. full of ideas about how to improve strategic thinking. ” -Michael E. Porter, Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University Kenichi Ohmae-voted by The Economist as “one of the world’s top five management gurus”-changed the landscape of management strategy in The Mind of the Strategist.

In this compelling account of global business domination, Ohmae reveals the vital thinking processes and planning techniques of prominent companies, showing why they work, and how any company can benefit from them.

Filled with case studies of strategic thinking in action, Ohmae’s classic work inspires today’s managers to excel to new heights of bold, imaginative thinking and solutions. Since being originally published in 1975 in Japan and 1982 in English, this becomes has almost become a bible for strategists and business enthusiasts and students. It has sold over 200000

This was my first foray into the business strategy literature, but I’m afraid I found this “modern day Adam Smith” to be a bit windy and wandering. Ohmae presents the problem of developing a business strategy as a balancing act of three primary forces: Company, Customer, and Competition. These 3 Cs provide the structure for any business strategy. I give it a solid 3 stars for its good content.

Old book but worth your time Indeed, this book was written by the famous McKinsey’s Japanese consultant for quite a long time. It deals with basic strategies for any business.

It will not tell you ny new buzzy business models i. e. internet or biotech. However, you can use the book as a keystone to improve you strategic thinking.

The 3C’s of Marketing Analysis In 1975, Kenichi Ohmae, a director at the management-consulting firm McKinsey ; Company, published ‘The Mind of the Strategist: The Art of Japanese Business. ‘ The purpose of strategy is to maximize competitive advantage, strategy begins with analysis, and the ‘strategic triangle’ of customers, competitors, and company is effective analysis framework for identifying competitive advantage.

This method of analysis yields two critical insights: . The market segments to target now based on present competitive advantage. 2. The market segments that offer the best future opportunities based on size, projected growth rate, and a company’s ability to quickly and economically gain a competitive advantage.

Your Company, Your Customers, and Your Competition In The Mind of the Strategist Kenichi Ohmae emphasizes that strategy doesn’t come from a scientific (or even logical) approach to developing a plan to maximize profits.

Instead, it comes from viewing your competitive world in new and unconventional ways. Another Ohmae based philosophy is what he calls the “Strategic Triangle. ” Here, he maintains that when developing your business strategy, you must take into account the three main players: your company itself, your customers and your competition – appreciating that each has its own unique set of interests and objectives. He outlines four different approaches to developing winning strategies, but they all share the same underlying philosophy: avoid doing the same thing, on the same battlefield, as your competitors. he one that intrigued me the most and the one I thought would be the most effective.

I found it so relevant in fact that I reference it in my book The Three Pillars of Sustainable Profit ; GrowthThe Three Pillars of Sustainable Profit and Growth. It starts with the premise that certain functions within every business are more critical for success in that particular business environment than others. If you concentrate effort on these areas and your competitors do not, this is a potential source of competitive advantage. The key, of course, is to correctly identify what these key factors for success are.

Having dealt with Japanese business people, one of the first things that struck me as I ead this book was the fact that Mr. Ohmae tended to be blunt and outspoken, a characteristic that is not common in the Japanese culture where the tendency is subtlety.

His directness, however, has served him well in conveying meaningful business insights and strategies in this book. It is a staple in my reference library. Effective Strategic Thinking This is an interesting book that posits the idea that effective business strategies emanate from the state of mind. Kenichi Ohmae explains the thought processes behind Japan’s successful strategic thinking.

The author methodically and in simple English discusses what strategic thinking entails and concepts behind it. He reinforces the message with practical examples for its application.

Although the book is now 25 years since publication, the ideas it teaches are still applicable and relevant. However, it may benefit from a revision since, at the time it was written, it was fashionable to try to discover the secrets of Japanese success, but the aura and magic of Japan is no longer as it used to be. Anyway, the book does not say much about Japanese Business. The revision could Just be to remove “The Art of Japanese Business” from the title.

However, the author’s main message that successful business strategies do not result from rigorous analysis but from a particular state of mind is still as valid as it ever was.

What I didn’t like In so far as Ohmae adheres to talking about these topics, the book is very well done. With plenty of examples he explains exactly what he means. However I felt that once the introductory paragraphs were done, the author started to toss out any old story that he felt interesting without regard to its applicability to the topic at hand. Likewise, he provides plenty of graphs which are barely labeled, barely related, and barely meaningful.

Each chapter starts off really well but soon devolves into handwaving. Though it is hard to fault him for his reliance on anecdotes about Japanese companies, a broader global pool of companies would have driven home the points companies have shed a lot of the stereotypical structure that he thinks so vital to their success.

Recommendation I strongly recommend this book, it serves as a great foundation for anyone studying business or with a general interest in the subject, it will change your way of thinking nd help you on your way to the top.

The only con for this book is that it is now over 30 years old so some of the examples are not to relevant today and the three c’s which are summarised in detail here, have been added to in the more recent books from Ohmae on topics such as globalization After reading this book i have become an Avid fan and own all of his english books and can say that every one of them ahs been beneficial to my degree and has allowed me to look at things in a slightly different way to those that are taught normally in a busienss studies degree.

A must own book!!! In his landmark book, Ohmae concentrated on the thought processes behind Japan’s successful strategic thinking, described what strategic thinking is and offered both a conceptual framework and practical advice on its application. Summary The Author tries to show that there is no set busienss rules and that truly great businesses are born from great strategy and that all comes from a great strategist and he examines the one thing all great strategists have in common, their way of thinking.

The book itself is divided into three parts: PART 1: The Art of strategic thinking In this part, Ohmae writes about the important things that must be consieder upon formulating a strategy, the analysis required, possible ways to gaining strategic advantage key factors and how to build on an advantage that you may already have.

It also teachers the reader that they shouldn’t always concern themselves 100% with what competitors do, but work on maximising their own strengths.

Ohmae also reveals the secret of strategic vision, in which he explains terms such as strategic tunnel vision, a condition that occurs all to often in the business world as executives nder pressure and stress seem to be less and less open to new things and lose sight of other options available to them.

PART II: Building successful Strategies Oln this part Ohmae suggests ways in that strategies that have already been succesful can be built upon in order to make them even better, he introduces his theory to the strategic 3 c’s, customer, company and competition and suggests that these are the three factors that need to be considered in a strategy and that the strategy must include the right mix of each. He also goes ‘to detail given examples about strateges geared to each of the three extremes.

PART Ill: Modern Strategic Realities In the last part of this books, Ohmae takes it into a dfferent direction from other books in that he writes about how strategies can be formulated so that they can deal with change, economical and environmental for example. In the conclusion of this book, he summarises the whole point of the book, and that is that you need to be able to think in an open minded way and look at the bigger picture in order to be sucessful, of course he goes into alot of detail in the book and gives a lot of hints and help built up from his vast experience.