This is one of the better strategy books I've read recently - while there's always some vague allusions and metaphors looking at military history and ancient battles in books of this genre, Good Strategy/Bad Strategy is light on those and heavy on what I actually care about, business strategy.
Rumelt sums up a good strategy as the following:
- A good diagnosis of the issue at hand and the underlying opportunities that are available
- A guiding policy that allows you to exploit those opportunities
- A set of actions that enable you to carry out the guiding policy
Bad strategy on the other hand can be characterised as:
- Meaningless "fluffy" words that say a lot while simultaneously saying nothing, see also New Thought
- An inability to adapt to the challenge
- Mistaking goals as strategy
- Failing to indentify issues or available opportunities
To be honest, any book that dumps on New Thought is going to be a-ok with me.