When it comes to vertical integration and diversification, corporate strategy is usually a lot like drugs . . .
Just Say No!
— Jay Barney
Its good to be back to Fisher after a short summer!!
The quarter started with Prof. Barney’s strategy class which is also known as Advanced Strategic Management. Its a very popular class and it gets house full before summer. Some students don’t get to sit in the class only because they registered late. So, register as early as possible!
For the first class, we had to read 4 chapters from his book “Gaining and Sustaining Competitive Advantage” and a business novel “What I Didn’t Learn in Business School: How Strategy Works in the Real World.” Both the books are simply “a must read.”
The class was an introduction to Strategy and it was very elementary. He was trying to answer a very basic question – He has a lawn and he needs to mow it. What should be his strategy? Should he vertically integrate or not??
We discussed various strategic ideas and frameworks to solve “lawn mowing” problem. The class was easy and an “eye opening” experience.
The irony was that after all the strategic considerations, it was obvious for the Barney family not to vertically integrate, but Mrs. Barney still mows the lawn. That is the problem with most of the businesses – It always bottoms down to HR problem!!
It was a great way to start the quarter! Looking forward to the rest of the learning and fun.