This is perhaps my favorite strategy paper now:

Pascale, Richard T. "Perspectives on strategy: The real story behind Honda's success." California Management Review26.3 (1984): 47-72.

In short: there was no coherent strategy behind Honda dominating the motorcycle market in the US in the 1950s and 1960s. They made a lot of mistakes and then reacted and reacted and reacted until they won. And they weren't even trying to win.

[p. 64] What saved Japan's near-failures was the cumulative impact of "little brains" in the form of salesmen and dealers and production workers, all contributing incrementally to the quality and market position these companies enjoy today. Middle and upper management saw their primary task as guiding and orchestrating this input from below rather than steering the organization from above along a predetermined strategic course.

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