Summary of Alexander The Great’s Art of Strategy

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Alexander The Great’s Art of Strategy book summary


9 Overall

8 Applicability

9 Innovation

8 Style


Partha Bose has crafted an impressive volume that stands equally well as a work of interpretive history or as a contemporary guide to effective business strategy. Like any lessons-of-history-applied-to-business volume, it works to find a delicate balance between past and present. Its practical business examples range from Honda to IBM to the war in Afghanistan (a land which Alexander was the last to conquer successfully). Fortunately, Bose avoids the temptation to give the facts of history short shrift. Do not expect to find an answer about whether to do that big acquisition deal. (You'll never establish your own business empire if you get too caught up in the details!) Instead, this volume brings to life the classic lessons of leadership that march across the eons, unstoppable, unchanging, unchallenged, like the Macedonian legion itself. highly recommends this book to executives, strategists, history buffs and all those who harbor a secret desire to rule the world!

In this summary, you will learn

  • How analyzing problems like Aristotle helped Alexander and can help you;
  • How to use Alexander's tactics; and
  • How Alexander motivated his men, constructed his organization, kept his moral compass, became a legendary leader and left a lasting legacy (but not a successor).

About the Author

Partha Bose is the Marketing Director of Allen & Overy, one of the world's largest law firms with 5,000 professionals and offices in 26 countries. Until March, 2003, he was the Chief Marketing Office of Monitor Group. Bose is a native of India who divides his time between Boston and London. He is a former partner of McKinsey & Company and editor of The McKinsey Quarterly.



Greatness Defined

The Greek poet Archilocus wrote that, “the fox knoweth many things, the hedgehog knows one great thing.” On July 26, 356 B.C., a boy was born in Macedonia’s royal capital of Pella. His name was Alexander III. His tutor would one day be none other than Aristotle, who would teach him to combine the broad knowledge of the fox with the wisdom of the hedgehog. History would come to know him as Alexander the Great.

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