Porter's Generic Strategies

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Porter’s Generic Strategies:

“Porter’s generic competitive strategies at the broadest level the firm may adopt one of three internally consistent generic strategies for taking offensive or defensive actions to cope successfully with competitive forces and thereby yield a superior return on investment. One of these strategies, focus, is further divided into cost-focus and differentiation-focus” (Miles and Snow 1978).

Criticisms:
- Too simplistic to represent all possible strategic behaviours (Benito and Gonzales 2010). - Authors argue that they can be compatible (each element, unlike Porter who says they must stand alone in order for success). (Cronshaw, Davis, Kay 1994) (Hill 1998, Miller 1992, Murray, 1988). - Porter’s two typologies (diff and cost) are different, each stressing somewhat different aspects of business level strategy (Miles and Snow 1978). (Supporting what Benito and Gonzales 2010 stated saying that they are limited for standing alone and not being integrated). - Miles and Snow (1978) further suggest that a synthesis of these two important typologies is long over due and would contribute much to the state of the art of strategic theory in this area. - Deliberately devoided of environmental characteristics (Miles and Snow 1978). - Porter placed less emphasis on behavioural aspects of strategy making (such as level of risk and size of strategy- making team) (Miles and Snow 1978).

Alternative Models to Porter’s Generic Strategies:

Figure 1. Considers all four stages of the model working together rather than individually (like Porter’s generic strategies).

Figure 2. Elaborates upon figure 1 by specifying the variables that we measure. The model is also used to test out companies who put the emphasis on one generic business strategy (diff or cost) or a mixed emphasis on both. (Benito and Gonzales 2010).

Figure 3. Miles and Snow (1978)
Miles and Snow’s typology lends itself better to evaluation of...
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