Fish Can’t See Water: How National Culture Can Make or Break Your Corporate Strategy
October 28, 2013
The message of this book is simple: national culture, through its influence on corporate culture, has a powerful but often-invisible impact on the success of global companies. What’s more, the very same national traits that accelerate growth at one stage of the corporate life cycle may derail that growth at a different stage or when an inevitable crisis hits. How did Samsung Electronics become the world’s largest consumer electronics company in less than 20 years, unseating dominant Sony Corporation in the process? What pivotal role did the national heritage of both companies play in this? How did Toyota create a sustainable competitive advantage for almost 25 years, by adapting a global business philosophy deeply rooted in Japanese culture? How did the Finnish roots of Nokia and the American roots of GM first help both companies, only later to derail their success? In a global world where most processes and products can and will be copied, culture matters more than ever, and as this book shows, can be a source of sustainable competitive advantage! As they say: ‘Culture eats Strategy for lunch!’ Through case examples that include: Toyota, Austin Motor Company (later British Leyland), Samsung, Sony, Nokia, and P&G, Hammerich and Lewis provide a new conceptual framework and 10 vital tools for analyzing corporate culture and diagnosing the dynamics that drive the success of global companies.
Fish Can’t See Water: How National Culture Can Make or Break Your Corporate Strategy, by Kai Hammerich and Richard D. Lewis. Chichester, West Sussex : John Wiley & Sons Ltd., 2013. 296 p. ISBN 9781118608562 (hardcover)
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