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Book Review – A.G.Lafley’s “Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Works”

by Andrew White  |  March 4, 2013  |  2 Comments

Book of the Month (February): Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Work, by A.G.Lafley, Roger L Martin, 2013, Harvard Business Review Press. 

I loved this book.  I used to work in consumer goods (Elizabeth Arden, 5 years) and much of the real world context made a lot of sense to me.  This book is about choices, or how to make them – that is the essence of strategy.  The master of P&G, ex CEO A.G.Lafley, uses the Olay story (and others) to explain how he and his partners developed a practical strategy framework to help make decisions, and how to enthuse the rest of the organization around these decisions.  I was reminded of my early business planning straining (E.G.& G., Igor Ansoff – Corporate Strategy) and much of the process explained is predicable, connected, and valuable.  This is a timely refresher for all of us, given that we are led to believe that strategy is so important.  This book proves that it is not “strategy” that counts; but it is the decisions we take that is – that is the essence of strategy. 

Do it.  10 out of 10.

Category: business-and-it  

Andrew White
Research VP
8 years at Gartner
22 years IT industry

Andrew White is a research vice president and agenda manager for MDM and Analytics at Gartner. His main research focus is master data management (MDM) and the drill-down topic of creating the "single view of the product" using MDM of product data. He was co-chair… Read Full Bio


Thoughts on Book Review – A.G.Lafley’s “Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Works”


  1. […] Book of the Month (February): Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Work, by A.G.Lafley, Roger L Martin, 2013, Harvard Business Review Press. I loved this book. I used to work in consumer goods (Elizabeth Arden, 5 years) and much of the real world…  […]

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