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2013 800-CEO-READ Business Book Awards: Leadership

Sally Haldorson

December 17, 2013

The entries were submitted, the books were read, the shortlists determined, and we are now ready to announce the category winners of the 2013 800-CEO-READ Business Book Awards! In the Leadership category. .


The entries were submitted, the books were read, the shortlists determined, and we are now ready to announce the category winners of the 2013 800-CEO-READ Business Book Awards! In the Leadership category... Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works by A.G. Lafley & Roger L. Martin from Harvard Business Review Press is our top book.

"The essence of great strategy is making choices—clear, tough choices, like what business to be in and which not to be in, where to play in the business you choose, how you will win where you play, what capabilities and competencies you will turn into core strengths, and how your internal systems will turn those choices and capabilities into consistently excellent performance in the marketplace. And it all starts with an aspiration to win and a definition of what winning looks like." Playing to Win, page 46

This book relays the strategic approach P&G used over the 10-year period Lafley (with Martin as advisor) led the company to increase its market value to $100 billion. But this isn't an industry book as much as it is a "story about choices, including the choice to create a discipline of strategic thinking and strategic practice within an organization." And that's truly what makes this book so good. It is, indeed, a story, and its two authors are invested in communicating the impressive work done at P&G and teaching this approach to others. To revisit the runners-up, check out our Leadership shortlist announced last week.

(Our top award for The Best Business Book of 2013 will be announced in early January. Stay tuned!)

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