Read The Book of Five Rings for Executives: Musashi's Classic Book of Competitive Tactics by Donald G. Krause Online

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Explains how business executives can apply the strategic thinking of the 17th century Japanese swordsman, and looks at the stories of today s top business leaders...

Title : The Book of Five Rings for Executives: Musashi's Classic Book of Competitive Tactics
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1857881346
ISBN13 : 978-1857881349
Format Type : Hardcover
Language : Englisch
Publisher : Nicholas Brealey Publishing Oktober 1998
Number of Pages : 404 Pages
File Size : 687 KB
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Book of Five Rings for Executives: Musashi's Classic Book of Competitive Tactics Reviews

  • Donald Mitchell
    2018-11-13 19:53

    This book is a valuable development of the metaphor of a samurai sword fight for how to gain competitive tactical advantage in business. The author has taken Miyamoto Musashi's 1643 classic and put it into the context of business issues. The book contains Musashi's principles updated and customized for the current business world in seven principles, five aspects (or rings), examples from Japanese companies' use of these ideas, and cases (Starbucks, Robert E. Lee, Warren Buffett, George Washington crossing the Delaware, Andy Grove, Bill Gates, Lawrence of Arabia, and Donald Trump). As a result, the lessons are quite accessible and clear.The seven principles are: Ordered Flexibility ("the nature of water"), Execution ("appropriate action at the right time"), Resources ("information is the fabric of tactics"), Environment ("approach derives from circumstances"), Attitude ("firm, yet flexible . . . centering on a determining reality"), Concentration ("concentrating strength against weakness or resources against opportunity"), and Timing ("when the scale is tipped in favor of the tactics you have chosen").The Japanese business application of this approach is to: 1) copy technology and train people. (2) recombine elements and widen market acceptance. (3) increase quality/price ratio and dominate markets.The five aspects are: (1) Foundation (2) Form (3) Fire (4) Fabric and (5) Focus.Let me elaborate on the Foundation concept to give you a sense of what is in these sections. The rules of Foundation are: (1) Do what is right, what is correct. (2) Sense the rhythm and timing in everyday situations. (3) Broaden your knowledge of management. (4) Study other arts and professions. (5) Distinguish between profitable and unprofitable activities. (6) See reality under all circumstances. (7) Look for what is not obvious. (8) Concentrate on critical details. (9) Eliminate useless activity. (This last sound's like Peter Drucker's famous exhortation to "slough off yesterday.")This book is the third volume in a series that Mr. Krause has created about how business people can compete more effectively that draw on classic books on this subject.Musashi's work is much better known in Japan than in the United States. He was a legendary samurai swordsman who from ages 13 to 29 defeated 60 men in duels. Death or severe injury was always at risk. Then he retired to a cave and lived as a pauper writing about the lessons of his battles for the next 30 years. This book is based on those writings which were a five part letter to his followers and students. The essence of that advice is to "look beneath the surface" of the events around you to distill their meaning.Those who wish to improve their sword fighting and dueling skills should read the original. Those who enjoy this book may wish to read the original as well. You will be rewarded by obtaining a deeper sense of the Zen philosophy behind these observations.All business people will benefit from this book. Highly recommended!Although this book focuses on tactics, you would do well to combine it with Sun Tzu's thinking about how to use strategy to create situations where no battle is needed. Then you need only practice your tactics to keep sharp, not to secure your advantage. For example, if your advantages in quality, effectiveness, honor, and prestige are so great that others know they cannot compete and would be harmed or simply waste time and effort by doing so, they will seek you out as a partner instead. Then, much more can be accomplished for all!Be sharp!

  • None
    2018-12-09 15:44

    I began reading BOOK OF FIVE RINGS as a martial arts student almost 20 years ago and continue to refer to it today as the bible of competitive strategy, using it everyday in business, martial arts, and other aspects of life. No serious businessperson's repertoire is complete without this very important book.

  • Mark
    2018-11-24 15:35

    great book.

  • Charlie
    2018-11-30 12:29

    Very good book by a very knowledgeable author. His books, and there are several, are must reads.

  • Robert Morris
    2018-11-29 12:45

    I recently re-read this book and Ways of Warrior Kings, Codes of Kings and will now share my current reactions to Miyamoto Musashi's classic analysis of what Donald G. Krause characterizes as the "Seven Principles of Competitive Success." Ordered Flexibility and Execution are the first two. According to Musashi, "Water is both ordered and flexible at the same time. It maintains its own identify, but conforms as necessary to the circumstances around it." Effective and appropriate execution produces desired results. Those who do so are called "executives." Here are the other five principles:Resources (i.e. assets and skills)Environment (i.e. physical surroundings, terrain, and weather)Attitude (i.e. alert as well as confident)Concentration (i.e. applying strength against weakness, committing resources to opportunity)Timing (i.e. effective execution at the appropriate moment)The acronym REACT will help some to remember them. Obviously, executives in all organizations must make hundreds of decisions each day, some of which could well determine the success or failure of a given initiative. To Krause's great credit, he never forces correlations between the battlefield and the business world even as he correctly suggests that much of what a 17th century samurai swordsman, Miyamoto Musashi, found true of combat is also true of commerce.Hence the importance of sustaining "ordered flexibility" while taking effective and appropriate execution to produce desire results. In this context, I am reminded of what Peter Drucker said in an article published in 1963 by the Harvard Business Review: "There is surely nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency what should not be done at all." Hence the importance, also, of the five REACT principles, without any one of which an initiative will almost certainly fail...or at least be much less successful than it would be otherwise.Of special interest to me is what Krause has to say about a remarkably diverse group of exemplars of Musashi's philosophies: Howard Schultz, Robert E. Lee, Warren Buffett, George Washington, Andy Grove, Bill Gates, T.E. Lawrence ("Lawrence of Arabia"), Donald Trump, and a pair of British officers, Lt. John Chard and Lt. Gonville Bromhead. (Who are Chard and Bromhead? They led the defense of Rorke's Drift by about150 British troops under ferocious attack by approximately 3,000 Zulu warriors. They held their position from the afternoon of January 22, 1879, until the next morning when the Zulu army withdrew.) According to Krause, what do all of these "master competitors" share in common? Prepare always, recognize, reality, and take action. Granted, no head-snapping revelations there nor does Krause claim to offer any. "God" may not be "in the details" but there is nonetheless a great deal of value to be learned from the details of battles such as those fought at Rorke's Drift as well as Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Trenton.It seems appropriate to have Musashi provide the conclusion to this brief commentary. "The ability to focus is your greatest asset in a competitive situation. When you appreciate the power of focus, you will feel the rhythm of your opponent and maintain control of his actions. You will understand his approach and effortlessly defeat him by naturally concentrating your attack in an appropriate place at an appropriate time." That is as true of competition today as it was more than 300 years ago. Indeed, much of what Musashi advocates is also emphasized in Sun Tzu's Art of War, written approximately 2,500 years ago. I commend Krause on brilliantly presenting a number of timeless business principles, each within a real-world context. Well-done!

  • Donald Mitchell
    2018-12-05 12:27

    This book is a valuable development of the metaphor of a samurai swordfight for how to gain competitive tactical advantage in business. The author has taken Miyamoto Musashi's 1643 classic and put it into the context of business issues. The book contains Musashi's principles updated and customized for the current business world in seven principles, five aspects (or rings), examples from Japanese companies' use of these ideas, and cases (Starbucks, Robert E. Lee, Warren Buffett, George Washington crossing the Delaware, Andy Grove, Bill Gates, Lawrence of Arabia, and Donald Trump). As a result, the lessons are quite accessible and clear.The seven principles are: Ordered Flexibility ("the nature of water"), Execution ("appropriate action at the right time"), Resources ("information is the fabric of tactics"), Environment ("approach derives from circumstances"), Attitude ("firm, yet flexible . . . centering on a determining reality"), Concentration ("concentrating strength against weakness or resources against opportunity"), and Timing ("when the scale is tipped in favor of the tactics you have chosen").The Japanese business application of this approach is to: 1) copy technology and train people. (2) recombine elements and widen market acceptance. (3) increase quality/price ratio and dominate markets.The five aspects are: (1) Foundation (2) Form (3) Fire (4) Fabric and (5) Focus.Let me elaborate on the Foundation concept to give you a sense of what is in these sections. The rules of Foundation are: (1) Do what is right, what is correct. (2) Sense the rhythm and timing in everyday situations. (3) Broaden your knowledge of management. (4) Study other arts and professions. (5) Distinguish between profitable and unprofitable activities. (6) See reality under all circumstances. (7) Look for what is not obvious. (8) Concentrate on critical details. (9) Eliminate useless activity. (This last sound's like Peter Drucker's famous exhortation to "slough off yesterday.")This book is the third volume in a series that Mr. Krause has created about how business people can compete more effectively that draw on classic books on this subject.Musashi's work is much better known in Japan than in the United States. He was a legendary samurai swordsman who from ages 13 to 29 defeated 60 men in duels. Death or severe injury was always at risk. Then he retired to a cave and lived as a pauper writing about the lessons of his battles for the next 30 years. This book is based on those writings which were a five part letter to his followers and students. The essence of that advice is to "look beneath the surface" of the events around you to distill their meaning.Those who wish to improve their sword fighting and dueling skills should read the original. Those who enjoy this book may wish to read the original as well. You will be rewarded by obtaining a deeper sense of the Zen philosophy behind these observations.All business people will benefit from this book. Highly recommended!Although this book focuses on tactics, you would do well to combine it with Sun Tzu's thinking about how to use strategy to create situations where no battle is needed. Then you need only practice your tactics to keep sharp, not to secure your advantage. For example, if your advantages in quality, effectiveness, honor, and prestige are so great that others know they cannot compete and would be harmed or simply waste time and effort by doing so, they will seek you out as a partner instead. Then, much more can be accomplished for all!Be sharp!

  • Amazon Customer
    2018-12-09 13:30

    This new interpretation of Musashi's classic bible of strategy and tactics explains the essence of his philosophy in clear modern terms. The central concept here is "Ordered Flexibility". If you come from a business background you no longer have to read The Book of Five Rings as metaphor (the original was written in the language of sword-play, the Zen art of killing your opponent swiftly and efficiently). Of course, the principles were always meant to be applicable to all areas of life, and they still are even though they were develloped over 350 years ago.Despite the fact that the quality of the information is very good, I've only given the book 4 stars because it is my opinion that the Fifth Ring was not properly develloped. This refers to the Void, the state of No-Mind. Remember, Musashi was a Samurai master of Zen swordsmanship, and no Book of Five Rings is complete without properly dealing with the concepts of Zen. I suppose Krause had a certain demographic in mind when he put this book together. All in all, a recommended addition to any financial player's library.