Aspiring NBA stars make a classic mistake when trying to watch, analyze and replicate the reasons why someone like Michael Jordan was so successful. In this podcast I explain why aspiring management consultants and those in industry make the very same mistake when watching, analyzing and replicating the reasons why McKinsey and BCG are so successful.

The problem is that we over-analyze what we are can see, and ignore the importance of what we cannot see.

This is also known and the cabbage-patch syndrome. To replicate, in your garden, the characteristics of prize winning cabbages, do you a) study the cabbage,  b) study the garden or c) study both?

This mistake is discussed in much more detail, using videos, in our Strategy Training Library which will soon be launched.

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2 responses to What Michael Jordan Can Teach You About Strategy

  1. Ajit,

    I never said it is not doable now.


  2. Hello Michael,

    Many thanks for the insightful podcast. I have a query about why it is difficult to create a tier 1 killer consulting firm.
    As I understand consulting is an apprenticeship based model. Where a partner recruits his or her own younger self under their wings and then the recruit learns tricks of the trade, eventually to become independent and set their own shop. Most of the Renaissance painters and artists come to my mind who started with a master and then later had their own art movement going.
    And i have observed this same phenomenon in audit firms where most of the partners hailed frame england and then created their own firms. Similarly Bill Bain was part of a top tier firm prior to starting Bain and company.
    If creating top tier firm was possible in earlier years, why do you think it’s not doable now? Is it because of the size of the firms, knowledge that is codified due to decades of experience or strength of the brand that is leveraged in attracting better talent and clients?
    Best Regards,

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