“The books I recommend are books I have read often since the age of 21. These are the books that made me join consulting. They are important to me.
They will inspire you and teach you. But you first need to be inspired so you choose to learn. Learning cannot be forced on you. You should not read a book you don’t like simply because it was recommended to you.
From Third World to First is the most important book about strategy I have ever read. I have read it 5 times and I keep it with me. FIRMSconsulting is modeled on the principles in this book.
The book teaches you the strategy, decisions and trade-offs required to build something of value when all seems lost and the odds are overwhelming.”
Good leaders get into the details, love their customers and care about their products.
“You can start with nothing, make a lot of big mistakes, eat in dive-type dinners and still build iconic products.”
“It is rare to read a book that introduces a new way of thinking. This is such a book.
Most people avoid finance because it is taught in a boring manner with tables, data and calculations.
Finances’ role in strategy is almost never taught. Finance is taught merely as a tool to measure the strategy. It is expected that one will just pick up an understanding of deep financial strategy. This book explains why finance is important and the central role it plays in enabling or disabling a strategy.
If finance were taught like this book, we would have more people interested in finance and better able to make finance decisions.
Finance is not spreadsheets and calculations. Those are only tools.”
“Every book ever written about McKinsey focuses on the analytics. That is not what makes a firm great. It is the culture that decides a firms’ destiny. The culture is the reason a firm chooses to do what it does.
It is the reason a firm can make the tough choices to preserve its focus on the client and doing great work. It is the reason most employees hold themselves to such high standards.
McKinsey will fail when it loses its culture. And McKinsey may be beaten when a competitor understands its culture.
The great thing about McKinsey’s culture is it is Marvin’s culture. And you don’t need to work at McKinsey to adopt and embrace Marvin’s culture. Your life will change after reading this book. Another book on which FC is modeled.”
Strategy and leadership requires a good mainframe.
If your ideas are the software, it can only run as fast as the hardware on which it is installed.
You need to invest in your body just as much as you invest in your mind. This needs to be done irrespective of your age. However, when you are younger, your youth can mask poor practices that lead to problems later. Beyond eating well, sleeping, rest and exercising, you should try certain supplements. This is what I use and they work for me.
These are the exact brands I use. Based on my research not all brands are effective.
“Bill and Michael mention this book often as the one book that perfectly explains marketing from a strategy perspective.
I would take this further and say this book explains business models from a macro-perspective and explains the principle of capitalism very well.
It is a dense read but Irresistible Empire is worth looking into since it drives so much of the thinking in The Bill Matassoni Show.”
“The Goal is a great book to read if you want to understand operations. A factory may be an unlikely setting for a novel but this book is very effective in helping you understand operations.
It is also quite entertaining to read. In fact, I had it as prescribed reading for my Operations course during my MBA and it is probably the most memorable book, case or article I ever read during my MBA, so highly recommended.”
“Bill speaks highly of Kenichi Ohmae in his memoir. He is one of a few people Bill calls “brilliant.”
The Mind of The Strategist remains one of a few strategy books we recommend to understand how to think critically.