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FT Essential Guide to Developing a Business Strategy


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Table of Contents

IntroductionWhy strategy?What is strategy?What is the output?What is the outcome?What is a strategic plan?What is strategic planning?The Strategy PyramidBusiness vs corporate strategy Part One: Strategy Development 1. Knowing Your Business Identifying key segments Essential example: Apple's saviour segmentsSegmentation in a start-up Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - the business 2. Setting Goals and Objectives Setting long-term goalsEssential example: Life at MarsSetting SMART objectives Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - goals and objectives 3. Forecasting Market Demand Sizing the marketForecasting market demand Essential tool: Moving averages Essential example: No wrap for the cinemaForecasting demand for a start-upMarket demand risks and opportunities Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - market demand 4. Gauging Industry Competition Assessing competitive intensityAssigning customer purchasing criteria Deriving key success factorsEssential tool: Economies of scaleEssential example: Jessops is shutteredGauging competition in a start-upIndustry competition risks and opportunities Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - industry competition 5. Tracking Competitive AdvantageRating competitive position Essential tool: Product/market riskReviewing resources and capabilities Essential tool: The value chainEssential example: The everlasting MonsoonCreating competitive advantage in a start-up Essential example: Of diet, dance and detectivesEssential case study: Extramural Ltd - competitive advantage 6. Targeting the Strategic GapTargeting the portfolio gapTargeting the capability gapProfiling the ideal playerSpecifying the target gapEssential example: Could Liverpool FC be champions again?Targeting the gap in a start-up Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - strategic gap 7. Bridging the Gap: Business Strategy Opting for a generic strategyEssential tool: The experience curveStrategic repositioning and shaping profit growth optionsEssential tool: Uncontested market spaceMaking the strategic investment decision Essential example: Sainsbury's fights backBridging the gap for a start-upBusiness strategic risks and opportunities Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - business strategy 8. Bridging the Gap: Corporate StrategyOptimising the corporate portfolioEssential tool: The growth/share matrixCreating value from mergers, acquisitions and alliancesEssential tool: Parenting valueBuilding strategically valuable resourcesEssential tool: Core competences Essential example: UU U-turnCorporate strategic risks and opportunities Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - corporate strategy 9. Addressing Risk and OpportunityReviewing plan in a market contextAppraising opportunity versus riskEssential tool: Expected value and sensitivity analysisEssential example: Britney does it again Essential case study: Extramural Ltd - risk and opportunity Part Two: Strategic Planning 10. The Strategic Plan Strategy + Business Plan = Strategic Plan Contents of a strategic planReviewing the plan 11. The Strategic Planning ProcessStrategic planning in a multi-business corporationEssential tool: Deliberate vs emergent strategyStrategic planning in a small or medium-sized enterpriseStrategic planning for a start-up Conclusion AppendixStructured interviewing Further Reading Glossary Index

Promotional Information

A 'how to' guide for entrepreneurs and managers who want to create and implement a strategy for their business.

About the Author

Vaughan Evans is an independent strategy consultant ( with a background in industry economics. He worked at management and technology consultants Arthur D. Little and at investment bank Bankers Trust. Vaughan graduated from Cambridge and has a Sloan Fellowship with distinction from London Business School. He is the author of four previous books, including the best-selling Financial Times Essential Guide to Writing a Business Plan.


'This is the most succinct and most practical handbook on business strategy on the market. In just a couple of hundred well-written pages, it synthesizes the most important ideas in the field. What sets it apart - and brings it to life - is that every concept that is introduced is immediately illustrated in practice through the use of a real-life case study.'Jules Goddard, Fellow, London Business School and author, with Professor Tony Eccles, of Uncommon Sense, Common Nonsense: Why Some Organisations Consistently Outperform Others 'A concise and highly practical guide to the fundamentals of strategic analysis and strategic planning.'Robert M. Grant, ENI Professor of Strategic Management, Bocconi University, Milan, Visiting Fellow at Georgetown University, Washington, and author of Contemporay Strategic Analysis, now in its eighth edition 'This is the ideal companion to Evans's The Financial Times Essential Guide to Writing a Business Plan. A plan worthy of investment is only as sound as its underpinning strategy. This terrific little book shows the manager just what he or she needs to do to build that strategy. Where has this book been for the last fifty years?'Jonathan Derry-Evans, Partner, Manfield Capital Partners 'It will be an enormous help to busy managers who are developing a business strategy for the first time, or trying to improve on previous attempts. This is another Evans book to be kept to hand on the desktop, not to be shelved!'Grahame Hughes, Founding Director, Haven Power Ltd 'If you are a small business or start up, this is an excellent guide to help you get your strategy right. Business strategy is all too often discussed in the context of big business. Vaughan Evans, on the other hand, makes it relevant to SMEs, demonstrating not only why buthow to develop the right strategy to succeed.'Anthony Karibian, CEO, bOnline Ltd. and serial entrepreneur 'This is a really good and practical guide - clear, insightful, straightforward and practical. It is a must-have guide for anyone setting out to build or grow a business. If strategy can be likened to charting a wise and successful course though challenging waters, then Evans provesonce again that he is a master mariner.'James Courtenay, Global Head, Advisory and Infrastructure Finance, Standard Chartered Bank 'Vaughan Evans is doing himself and his ilk out of the day job. With this easy-to-follow manual on how to develop a winning strategy, managers and investors won't need to engage pricey strategy consultants any more. Thanks!'Ken Lawrence, Partner, Gresham Private Equity 'A seminal business strategy manual, as invaluable to the entrepreneur, manager or business advisor as to the student of strategic planning.'James Pitt, Partner, Lexington Advisors UK Limited

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