Tuesday, June 7, 2011


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leaders are nessesarpeople to a common goal. Some leadership styles and techniques are unique to the environment and people that are being lead. And some characteristics may be considered subjective. For the purpose of this paper I’ve identified some characteristics of leadership that are a must for any given situation. They are the following

1. Honest Leading people and being followed by people has a lot to do with trust. You don’t just receive trust from others, you have to earn it. You earn it by being honest; by doing what you say, by being trustworthy.

. Consistent A leader not only has a clear picture of goals he wishes to achieve; the manner in which he strives for those goals must also be clear to him. This becomes a framework for decision making.

. Perseverance Leading a group of people to reach a goal can be a very tough road. Mountains needs to be conquered Michael Porter provided the 5 forces model. This model serves as a framework that models an industry and the five forces that act upon it. A strategic business manager that seeks to develop an edge over rival firms can use this model to better understand the industry context in which the firm operates. The five forces are described as the following

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1. Supplier Power Concentration, differentiation of inputs, switching costs, substitute inputs, cost.

. Buyer Power Bargaining leverage, volume, brand identity, price sensitivity, substitutes, buyer incentive.

. Threat of Substitutes Switching costs, price, trade-off

4. Barriers to Entry Cost advantages, learning curve, access to materials, government regulation, economies of scale, capital requirements, switching costs.

5. Rivalry Exit barriers, fixed costs, industry growth, brand identity.

These five industry forces simplify the competitive forces that act on a firm in industry. By looking at each of these a strategic manager can identify where they fit strategically in their market and quickly identify areas that need more attention. These forces help us analyze everything from the intensity of competition to the profitability and attractiveness of an industry.

Book Industry

Supplier Power

In the United States there are upwards of 40,000 publishers with about 0 of them accounting for approximately 88% of all North American sales. Recent takeovers are concentrating publishers into larger conglomerates. This has an effect of reducing headcount, consolidating smaller imprints, and empowering publishers with more title selections.

The majority of books published will go through a wholesaler or retailer before getting to the end book buyer. Books are offered to both at substantial discounts for large volume orders, upwards of 44% to 55% off of suggested retail price. A discount of % to % more could be added on top of that to retailers for in store promotions such as end-caps and store recommendations. A recent discount of % to 5% was offered to those purchasers who waived the return privileges that were historically granted to wholesalers and retailers in the book market.

Wholesalers also sell to retailers with discounts nearly, but not quite, matching those of the publisher. They offer free and, in many cases, more speedy delivery. Wholesalers have recently experienced a downturn of .5%. This is believed to have been caused by publishers offering better discounts and financing terms.

Buyer Power

Buyers have several avenues of buying books in comparison to 0 years ago. Book buyers range from technical / business book buyers to leisure buyers. These buyers will also prefer to buy their books differently. Some will take a convenience approach and demand online purchasing where others are more of a destination and experience shopper. To be successful in capturing the book buying market a company needs to cater to the needs of all.

Threat of Substitutes

Books are rated as the third-largest product category in online retailing, with a broad array of substitutes. These substitutes include cable TV, VCR’s / DVD’s, video games, and the Internet. Many people in society will choose TV, a movie or game as an alternative to reading a book. With the increasing availability and new technology being developed, these mediums are becoming more enticing and fulfilling to the consumer. An even greater threat directed towards books is that of e-publishing. People are now able to publish directly to the web, bypassing all traditional print and publishing methods.

Barriers to Entry

To come in on a level playing field for this market a large reserve of capital would be needed to invest in the destination and convenience shopping experience the buyers are demanding. Supply channels shouldn’t be a huge issue. While there are around 40,000 publishers in the United States, books would need to be purchased at a large volume in order to receive any substantial discounts to be able to compete on a price level with competitors. While this may still be an option, there have always been suspicions of favoritism to large chain stores in the industry. Wholesalers on the other hand have historically supplied independent booksellers; nevertheless they can’t offer the deep discounts that can be received from a publisher.


Book retailing traditionally existed through independent local bookstores. While they still exist, superstores have evolved from them and further increased the competition in the book market. Due to sheer size and access to capital, these giants are able to compete on another level of service and selection that not many can touch.

Computer Industry

Supplier Power

In the computer industry there are five large firms that hold the majority of the market and thousands of others that custom make computers for retail. Most of these companies need the majority of their computer parts pre-made by other firms such as Seagate, Cisco, Intel, and others. Supplier power may be classified as having less power than their buyers. However, there are a few that have made a huge name for themselves and in turn have a lot of power. One of them would be Intel.

Today the price of computer hardware is getting increasingly cheaper. This forces the suppliers into competition with each other.

and valleys crossed. It’s not simple. Only when someone is able to “put their teeth into it” can they reach the finish line.

4. Skilled A leader doesn’t have to be a specialist, but he must be capable of guiding and judging his people through his professional skill and insight.

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