BPL – Additional Reading List

This is a recommended reading list for students in BPL 5100 at Baruch College, the business capstone course I teach focused on strategic management. These books are great to read for current or past students who want a deeper dive on topics covered in the course.


Understanding Michael Porter by Joan Magretta

A focused deep dive into the works of Michael Porter, including many of the frameworks discussed in the course (Value Chain, 5 Forces, Differentiation).

Good Strategy, Bad Strategy by Richard Rumelt

An easy read / listen, great for those who enjoyed our case discussions. Written in a way that models the case method used in some of our class discussions and most MBA courses.

The Lords of Strategy by Walter Kiechel III

A great overview of the history of strategy consultants and business strategy as an academic discipline. A great listen.

7 Powers: The Foundations of Business Strategy by Hamilton Helmer

A modern take on the powers businesses can leverage to be successful. Very applicable to large tech and network focused businesses. Required reading for anyone focused on strategy in Big Tech, social media, etc.


The Phoenix Project by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford

The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt

Both of these are great narratives that take the reader on a journey to better understand operational best practices and theories. The Goal is required reading in almost every MBA operations course, and The Phoenix Project is a modern retelling of the goal, moving into DevOps instead of manufacturing.

Case Studies

Amp It Up by Frank Slootman

Written by Frank Slootman, Snowflake CEO, who comes up in the course for discussions on incentives, leadership, and strategy implementation.

The Everything Store by Brad Stone

Working Backwards by Colin Bryar and Bill Carr

Two great books for a closer look at Amazon. The first focuses on Bezos and the first half of Amazon’s life, while the second is written by Amazon insiders and focuses on Amazon’s peculiar practices (as well as a few great case studies and war stories).

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