Blue Ocean Shift Book Summary - Blue Ocean Shift Book explained in key points
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Blue Ocean Shift summary

W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne

Beyond Competing – Proven Steps to Inspire Confidence and Seize New Growth

4.4 (207 ratings)
24 mins

Brief summary

Blue Ocean Shift by W. Chan Kim & Renée Mauborgne is a management book that guides leaders to create new market spaces. It shows how to move from a red ocean of fierce competition to a blue ocean where demand is created.

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    Blue Ocean Shift
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    Transcend competition with a blue ocean shift.

    When choosing a business strategy, it’s important to decide which direction you want it to take, and most people assume your choices are limited to two: the value-driven path, along which your business expands through outstanding quality and service, and the low-cost strategy, through which your business endeavors to offer the best price among all its competitors.

    Those two options are all well and good, but there’s a third strategy that can do much more. It’s called the blue ocean shift. The blue ocean shift is about taking your business beyond competition into markets that are entirely untouched.

    Just take the example of Groupe SEB, a well-established French maker of small appliances like those that make french fries. One of the basic assumptions in this industry was that making french fries involved deep frying and using a great deal of oil. Nobody ever thought to challenge this idea, even though cooking in liters of oil is expensive, dangerous, messy and, of course, unhealthy.

    But in 2006, Groupe SEB came out with the ActiFry, introducing a whole new way of making french fries that requires no frying and employs just a tablespoon of oil. ActiFry brought in new customers, opened up a brand-new market and positioned Groupe SEB as a global leader.

    In other words, the essence of a blue ocean shift is moving from a market that’s pervaded by fierce competition, a so-called red ocean, into a blue ocean, a market that’s wide open and full of opportunity. Such a move might seem like a magic trick, but there’s a straightforward method behind it that abides by three key components.

    First, you need a new blue ocean perspective that expands the horizon of your thinking; second, you need humanness along the way to motivate people into helping you make the shift of perspective; and third, you have to have the market-creating tools to transform that perspective into an attractive product.

    However, these concepts are all very abstract. In the following blinks, you’ll learn all the nitty-gritty details of how this process works and how you can put it into action.

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    What is Blue Ocean Shift about?

    Blue Ocean Shift (2017) is a step-by-step guide to moving past competition in an overcrowded industry. These blinks, based on decades of the authors’ practical experience, explain why you should endeavor to make competition obsolete and how you can open up whole new worlds of opportunity.

    Blue Ocean Shift Review

    Blue Ocean Shift (2017) is a thought-provoking book that challenges traditional business strategies and provides a roadmap for creating new, uncontested markets. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It offers a practical framework for identifying and seizing untapped growth opportunities, enabling businesses to break free from competition and create new blue oceans.
    • The book showcases numerous real-life case studies that demonstrate how companies successfully implemented blue ocean strategies, providing actionable insights and inspiration.
    • With its data-driven analysis and clear explanations, the book presents a compelling argument that challenges traditional thinking and offers a fresh approach to business innovation.

    Best quote from Blue Ocean Shift

    An organization that has the confidence to make the blue ocean shift but lacks the knowledge of how to get there is like a gambler.

    —W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne
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    Who should read Blue Ocean Shift?

    • Entrepreneurs, managers, CEOs and business leaders
    • Small business owners
    • Business scholars and theorists of competition and market strategy

    About the Author

    W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne are professors of strategy at INSEAD and co-directors of the INSEAD Blue Ocean Strategy Institute. They co-wrote the 2004 international bestseller Blue Ocean Strategy. In addition to receiving numerous awards, they were also listed by Thinkers50 among the top three management gurus in the world.

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    Blue Ocean Shift FAQs 

    What is the main message of Blue Ocean Shift?

    Finding new opportunities and creating uncontested markets is the main message of Blue Ocean Shift.

    How long does it take to read Blue Ocean Shift?

    The estimated reading time for Blue Ocean Shift is several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Blue Ocean Shift a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Blue Ocean Shift is worth reading for its fresh approach and practical strategies to win in the marketplace.

    Who is the author of Blue Ocean Shift?

    W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne are the authors of Blue Ocean Shift.

    What to read after Blue Ocean Shift?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Blue Ocean Shift, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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    • Find Your WHY by Simon Sinek
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