Summary of the “Blue Ocean Strategy” by W. Chan Kim

3-Line Summaries:

1. “Blue Ocean Strategy” says businesses can do better by finding new markets instead of fighting in crowded ones.

2. It’s all about being different and creative to find fresh opportunities.

3. The book gives practical advice and examples to help companies succeed by thinking outside the box.

Quote of the Book:

Stop looking to the competition. Value-innovate and let the competition worry about you.

W. Chan Kim

About the Author:

W. Chan Kim is a professor who is famous for his ideas about business strategy, innovation, and how companies can change. He works at a top business school called INSEAD, where he helps lead the Blue Ocean Strategy Institute. Kim is best known for writing a book called “Blue Ocean Strategy” with Renée Mauborgne. This book has influenced how businesses think about competition and coming up with new ideas. Kim’s main focus is on helping companies create new markets and grow in smart ways. People see him as a big expert in making strategies and coming up with new ways of doing things in business.

Broad Summary:

Think of the business world like an ocean. There are two types of places in this ocean: red oceans and blue oceans.

Red Oceans are like really crowded and competitive waters. Lots of companies are fighting for the same customers, trying to get as much market share as they can. It’s tough to be different here, and there’s not much room for new ideas.

But then there are Blue Oceans, which are like wide-open seas with plenty of space. In these waters, there’s not a lot of competition yet, so companies can try out new things and make unique products. They have the freedom to be creative without worrying about other companies copying them.

The book “Blue Ocean Strategy” says that instead of battling it out in the crowded red oceans, companies should look for opportunities in the blue oceans. By coming up with fresh ideas and offering something different, they can find success without having to fight so hard against other companies. It’s about finding your own path and making a splash in new and unexplored territory.

“Blue Ocean Strategy” offers a treasure map with six keys for businesses to discover new opportunities and outshine their rivals. First off, it suggests companies steer away from crowded waters and instead sail towards uncharted territories by creating fresh markets or tweaking what they offer to appeal to different customers.

Secondly, rather than drowning in numbers and competition, they should focus on making their customers happy and creating value for everyone involved.

Thirdly, it encourages them to stir up demand for their goods or services by thinking outside the box and offering something unique that draws in new customers.

Fourthly, they should make sure they’re taking the right steps in the right order, aligning all aspects of their strategy to ensure they make the biggest splash while minimizing risks.

Fifth, they need to work on their internal ship to keep it sailing smoothly, making sure everyone on board is rowing in the same direction and supporting innovation.

Finally, it stresses the importance of putting their plans into action, making sure they’re practical and achievable, with clear steps to follow through. These principles act like a compass, guiding businesses on their journey to success in unexplored waters.

“Blue Ocean Strategy” isn’t just about ideas—it’s like handing businesses a treasure chest full of tools to unlock new markets and leave their competition in the dust. First up, there’s the Strategy Canvas, which is like a special map for your business. It shows you exactly where you stand compared to your rivals and helps you find ways to shine bright.

Then, there’s the Four Actions Framework, which is like a cool pair of glasses that let you see things differently. It helps you break free from the usual ways of doing things and find fresh ways to save money while adding value. And let’s not forget the Six Paths Framework, which is like a trusty compass guiding you towards new adventures. It helps you explore different paths your business can take, like discovering hidden treasure troves of opportunity in untapped markets. With these tools in hand, businesses can set sail towards blue oceans with confidence, ready to uncover new ways to succeed and leave their competitors eating their wake.

“Blue Ocean Strategy” isn’t just about boring theories—it’s full of exciting tales about real companies shaking things up in the business world. From big companies like Cirque du Soleil to small local shops, it’s like a treasure chest of inspiring success stories. It’s like flipping through a magazine, but instead of seeing vacation spots, you get to peek into different industries and watch companies break free from the crowd. Whether it’s changing how we see the circus or making cheap flights awesome, these stories show how businesses can find their own path and make big waves. It’s like having a front-row seat to the coolest show in town, where creativity and new ideas steal the spotlight.

“Blue Ocean Strategy” is a really cool concept that suggests companies should focus on creating new market spaces instead of just competing within existing ones. By challenging industry assumptions, unlocking new demand, and aligning organizational capabilities, companies can discover untapped opportunities for growth and success. However, it’s important to remember that implementing blue ocean strategies requires careful planning, execution, and adaptation to ensure long-term viability and competitiveness. But don’t worry, with the right approach and mindset, you can definitely make it happen!

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Best Lessons from the Book:

Lesson 1: Charting Your Own Course

Hey there!

Let me tell you a story about a big ship sailing through a crowded sea. Everywhere you look, there are other ships, all trying to get to the same destination. That’s just like the crowded business market we have today. There are lots of businesses, all doing the same thing, all competing for the same customers.

But guess what? You don’t have to follow the crowd. “Charting your own course” is all about thinking differently. It’s about looking at the map and finding a different path, one that leads to unexplored waters where you can stand out and be unique.

You can find a new group of customers who aren’t being served by anyone else. Or maybe it means changing what you offer in a way that nobody else is doing. Whatever it is, it’s about being brave enough to go your own way, even when everyone else is going the other direction.

By charting your own course, you can discover new opportunities and create your own blue ocean of success, far away from the crowded waters of the competition. So, let’s be brave and take that leap of faith to find our own unique path to success!


Lesson 2: Navigating New Horizons

Imagine you’re the captain of a ship sailing through a busy ocean full of other ships going the same way. This ocean is like a crowded market, where businesses are all fighting for the same customers and doing the same things.

But as the captain of your ship, you can go your own way. “Navigating New Horizons” means being brave and exploring new places beyond the usual competition. It’s about looking for fresh ideas and opportunities that nobody else has found yet.

Maybe there’s a whole group of customers waiting to be found, or maybe there’s a new way of doing things that nobody has tried. By exploring new horizons, you can find your own path to success, away from the crowded market where everyone else is stuck.


Lesson 3: Creating Waves of Demand

Close your eyes and imagine you’re at the beach, feeling the warm sand between your toes and watching the waves roll in. Each wave brings something new and exciting, drawing people in to enjoy the water. Now, let’s think of your business as those waves—constantly bringing something fresh and irresistible to your customers.

“Creating Waves of Demand” is all about making a splash in the market by offering something so unique and innovative that it creates its own demand. It’s about going beyond just meeting existing needs and instead, making people want something they didn’t even know they needed.

Think about companies like Apple or Tesla—they didn’t just make products to meet existing demand; they created products that people didn’t even realize they wanted until they saw them. By offering something truly innovative and different, they made waves in the market and attracted customers in droves.

So, whether it’s by inventing a revolutionary new product or offering a service that solves a problem in a completely new way, “Creating Waves of Demand” is about making your business stand out and draw people in like the irresistible pull of the ocean.


Lesson 4: Strategic Sailing

Think about going on a big sailing adventure to explore new places. Just like any trip, it’s crucial to plan your route carefully to avoid problems and reach your destination safely. That’s where “Strategic Sailing” comes in! It’s like drawing your route on a map, making sure you’re doing the right things at the right times to have the best chance of success.

Without a plan, sailing could mean getting lost or facing dangerous challenges. But with a smart plan, you can navigate through rough waters and reach your goals confidently. Whether it’s matching what you offer with what you have or launching your product at just the right time, “Strategic Sailing” is all about preparing yourself for success before you set sail.


Lesson 5: Unity in Navigation

Imagine you’re on a boat with your friends, ready for an adventure. Each person has a job—some steer, some raise the sails, and some keep watch for obstacles. But for the trip to work, everyone has to work together.

“Unity in Navigation” means making sure everyone in your business is heading towards the same goals. It’s like dancing together on the boat, each move helping us go the right way.

If the team argues or doesn’t cooperate, we won’t get where we want to go. But when everyone works together, we can overcome any problems and sail smoothly to success.


So, whether it’s setting goals together, working as a team, or talking openly, “Unity in Navigation” is about using teamwork to reach our business goals with confidence.

Best Key Ideas of the Book:

1.   Look for new opportunities by being innovative instead of just trying to outdo competitors.

2.   Focus on making customers happy rather than just trying to beat other companies.

3.   Make people want what you offer instead of just selling what’s already wanted.

4.   Plan your moves carefully to make the biggest impact while staying safe.

5.   Work together inside your company to support new ideas and changes.

6.   Make sure your plans can actually happen, not just be talked about.

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