Competitive Advantage by Michael E Porter

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Competitive Advantage

Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance

Author: Michael E. Porter

Michael E. Porter's Competitive Advantage explores the underpinnings of competitive advantage in the individual firm. Porter's groundbreaking concept of the value chain disaggregates a company into "activities," or the discrete functions or processes that represent the elemental building blocks of competitive advantage. Giving readers a comprehensive understanding of business strategy and how to create a sustainable competitive advantage for their organization, Porter explores how a firm can put the generic strategies of cost leadership, differentiation and focus into practice. This essay will explore Competitive Advantage and the underlining theory that to compete in any industry, companies must perform a wide array of discrete activities that are narrower than traditional functions. It will analyze the real core of the book which is to determine whether companies profit from creating value for customers, or whether that value is competed away.

INTRODUCTION
“Competitive Advantage is at the heart of a firm’s performance in competitive markets. After several decades of vigorous expansion and prosperity, however, many firms lost sight of competitive advantage in their scramble for growth and pursuit of diversification. Today the importance of competitive advantage could hardly be greater. Firms throughout the world face slower growth as well as domestic and global competitors that are no longer acting as if the expanding pie were big enough for all” (Pg. XXII). Competitive Advantage is a continuation of Michael Porter’s Competitive Strategy. Competitive Advantage gives readers a comprehensive understanding of business strategy and how to create a sustainable competitive advantage for their organization. Porter explores how a firm can put the…...

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