The Entrepreneur's Strategy Guide
Ten Keys for Achieving Marketplace Leadership and Operational Excellence
by Tom Cannon
September 2006, 320pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-0-275-98904-0
$84, £63, 73€, A114
eBook Available: 978-0-313-05649-9
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

What every entrepreneur needs to know about launching and sustaining a successful business—a practical guide to mastering the 10 key principles of marketplace and operational excellence

In an environment where the chances of failure are much greater than success, what will make your company a winner? Drawing from fifty years of experience, research, and observation in entrepreneurial strategy, Tom Cannon offers a game plan for entrepreurs. Dividing the book into two basic parts—the marketplace (external environment) and the organization (internal environment)—he outlines the ten core capabilities that every business must master in order to be successful. Illustrating each principle through examples of real companies, and engaging the reader through diagnostics, checklists, and other interactive exercises, Cannon presents an essential resource for entrepreneurs; managers of startups, spinoffs, and other entrepreneurial units; and students of strategy and business development. At the heart of the book is an emphasis on how entrepreneurs can execute ambitious visions and strategies by mastering the basics and recognizing opportunities to continuously improve and innovate.


"The typical entrepreneur usually has a dream--be it an innovative product or a service--which he or she believes would take the world by storm. But for every Google and eBay, there are thousands of other entrepreneur wannabes who fall by the wayside. Using his considerable experience in counseling start-ups as part of the Service Corps of Retired Executives, Cannon details a fine-grained blueprint that holds the entrepreneur's hand every step of the way. While myriad books on the market provide advice to ambitious business owners, this current one stands apart on several fronts. First, it is comprehensive and details both the external and the internal environment that the entrepreneur faces. Second, it is practical, as each chapter offers several dos and don'ts. Third, it relates the material to real-life insights that Cannon has gleaned from his practical experience. Cannon's advice to entrepreneurs is in the form of ten key lessons (e.g., targeted marketing, customer service, and dynamic business planning) that provide plausible take aways. Recommended. Collections supporting practitioners and entrepreneurship programs."—Choice, March 1, 2007

"Cannon's book describes successful strategies for small business CEOs and managers and start-up entrepreneurs. He covers externally focused strategies that position the business in the marketplace and managerial and operational strategies for implementation of this goal. He follows ten keys to create success, involving end-user benefits; pricing; infotech-strengthened channels and supply chains; sales and marketing; customer service; business planning; teaming; leveraged development, production, and outsourcing; problem solving; and linking growth strategies with profit plans. Many case examples are incorporated. Cannon is a marketing and strategic planning consultant specializing in startups and small businesses. The bibliography is annotated."—Reference & Research Book News, February 1, 2007

"Tom Cannon has made a significant contribution to business management resources. In this concise yet comprehensive handbook, the entrepreneur has a guide to defining, analyzing, and solving the many challenges facing managers today. The book should be kept close at hand and easily available for use."—Christopher W. Brown, Brattleboro, VT SCORE counselor

"Mr. Cannon presents a brilliant new look at the tools necessary for the success of the small business owner or startup entrepreneur. First, he maintains that this individual must study the market in detail to be sure that his or her product offers something to penetrate that market sufficiently. Then he provides guidance for the operational and management strategies necessary to lead the company through to ultimate business success. Many other authors have addressed the second of these sets of objectives, although not as well presented and explained, but rarely the first, and very rarely in conjunction with the other. Both are vital."—J. Thomas Lawson, Retired executive at IBM, GTE, EMI, LTD., and XEROX

"The Entrepreneur's Strategy Guide is a stimulating and accessible how--to book that might well have been subtitled, avoiding bankruptcy for the first--time entrepreneur. Mr. Cannon is a very disciplined thinker and there is no slack in his presentation. He brings every important point to life through examples of what real people did in similar situations. As one who lived through 45 years of challenge from the lions and tigers of the New York business world, I feel that life would have been somewhat more carefree if I had had Mr. Cannon's book at my elbow. Want to be a successful entrepreneur?? Buy the book."—Earle K. Angstadt, Former CEO of McCall Pattern Co., and Abercrombie and Fitch

"I would highly recommend this book to any aspiring or active entrepreneur seeking to leverage their breakthrough ideas into a market leadership position. It distills 40 years of Tom's consulting experience in a clear, concise manner that I only wish had been available when I started my company, Dortech, in 1962."—Frank B. Carder, Founder and Former President of Dortech Co.
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