An Economic Principle For Us All: Comparative Advantage

In an update to his popular A Concise Guide to Macroeconomics, David Moss explains how the state of the macro economy affects managers, executives, students—and all the rest of us. In this excerpt, Moss illuminates David Ricardo’s theory of comparative advantage.

Breaking Through a Growth Stall

Many companies get stuck on a plateau, unable to grow and burning through cash at a frightening rate. Frank V. Cespedes discusses how focusing on the right customers can generate growth again.

The Forgotten Book that Helped Shape the Modern Economy

A British merchant’s long-forgotten work, An Essay on the State of England, could lead to a rethinking of how modern economies developed in Europe and America, and add historical perspective on the proper relationship between government and business. An interview with business historian Sophus A. Reinert.

Connecting Goals and Go-To-Market Initiatives

In some respects, developing strategy is the easy part. Executing that strategy in alignment with strategic priorities is where real mastery of management takes place. Harvard Business School senior lecturer Frank V. Cespedes shows how it is done.

The Minutes Before and After Customers Use Your Product

What happens immediately after a customer uses your product? Knowing the before and after around how your products are used will help you sell more — and build better future products.

When Goal Setting Goes Bad

If you ever wondered about the real value of goal setting in your organization, join the club. Despite the mantra that goals are good, the process of setting beneficial goals is harder than it looks. New research by HBS professor Max H. Bazerman and colleagues explores the hidden cost when stretch goals are misguided. Q&A.

Updating a Classic: Writing a Great Business Plan

Harvard Business School professor William A. Sahlman’s article on how to write a great business plan is a Harvard Business Review classic, and has just been reissued in book form. Now a decade old, we asked Sahlman what he would change if he wrote the article today.

The Web as Weapon to Flatten the Organization

When leading business thinker Gary Hamel analyzes the central problems with the modern hierarchical organization, he sees 5 debilitating deficits: too few voices are heard; creativity is confined and constrained; decisions are under informed; institutional barriers separate capital from talent; and an inability to adapt to fast-changing circumstances.

The fix? With its inherent ability to collect, store, share distributed data and knowledge, the Web can turn … [ Read more ]

Best Practices of Global Innovators

Corporate R&D labs used to be the key for companies to create competitive advantage. But in the 21st century, innovation is moving out of the lab and across the globe. That’s why Harvard Business School professor Alan MacCormack and his research collaborators believe that a real source of competitive advantage is skill in managing innovation partnerships.

Rediscovering Schumpeter: The Power of Capitalism

Economist Joseph Schumpeter was perhaps the most powerful thinker ever on innovation, entrepreneurship, and capitalism. He was also one of the most unusual personalities of the 20th century, as Harvard Business School professor emeritus Thomas K. McCraw shows in a new biography. Read our interview and book excerpt.

The Hidden Cost of Buying Information

New research from Harvard Business School’s Francesca Gino suggests that if we pay for information, we tend to overweigh its actual value.

What Great American Leaders Teach Us

A new database on great American leaders offers surprising insights on the nature of leadership. A Q&A with Tony Mayo, executive director of the Harvard Business School Leadership Initiative.

The Challenge of the Multi-site Nonprofit

Multi-site nonprofit organizations shouldn’t be run like companies that make money, say HBS professors Allen Grossman and V. Kasturi Rangan. The key for nonprofit managers is to embrace a balance between affiliation and autonomy.

Making the Perfect Pitch to VCs

When you are pitching your proposal to VCs, tell them an emotional story, says Nick Morgan. And put away the PowerPoint!

New Cluster Mapping Project Helps Companies Locate Facilities

A company’s decision on where to locate a facility must take more into account than simple labor costs, says Harvard Business School professor Michael E. Porter. The new Cluster Mapping Project, developed at Porter’s Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness, reveals detailed patterns of growth, resources, and competitiveness in forty-one regional clusters in the United States.

The Secret of How Microsoft Stays on Top

Critics say Microsoft’s incredible two-decade run at the top of the computer industry has less to do with innovation than it does with bully tactics. But new research from Harvard Business School professors Marco Iansiti and Alan MacCormack suggest a different reason: the company’s ability to spot technological trends and exploit key software technologies.

The Secret of How Microsoft Stays on Top

Critics say Microsoft’s incredible two-decade run at the top of the computer industry has less to do with innovation than it does with bully tactics. But new research from Harvard Business School professors Marco Iansiti and Alan MacCormack suggest a different reason: the company’s ability to spot technological trends and exploit key software technologies.

What it Takes to Lead Through Turmoil

What are the characteristics of companies that successfully transition in times of dramatic change? HBS professor Rosabeth Moss Kanter separates the leaders from the laggards in times of turmoil.