FAQs: An Interview with Michael Porter


This interview was conducted at the Harvard Business School over the course of several sessions during the first quarter of 2011. To prepare, I reviewed transcripts of Professor Porter’s speaking events, paying special attention to the questions managers most often raise during the Q&A periods. Those frequently asked questions are reflected here.

I. Common Mistakes and Obstacles

Magretta: What are the most common strategy mistakes you see?

Porter: The granddaddy of all mistakes is competing to be the best, going down the same path as everybody else and thinking that somehow you can achieve better results. ...

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