Must-read Books

Succeeding as a Management Consultant Must-read Books

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Must-read Books

Our book, focuses on the day-in-the-life view on management consulting. There are two other books I would strongly urge you to read. “McKinsey’s Marvin Bower” by Elizabeth Haas Edersheim is the single most important book to read. In fact, many McKinsey consultants should read this book as well. “The Mind of the Strategist” by Kenichi Ohmae is the other. Both these books are with me all the time. In this podcast we discuss why you should read these books, and avoid the McKinsey Mind, Way series.

In general, if you want to be extremely analytic, avoid descriptive books and read prescriptive books. 99% of business books are those in which the author talks about something or someone he observed. They are not proper works of scientific rigor. Prescriptive books understand why something happened and explain how you can replicate the process. Moreover, merely because a book outlines a set of steps does not make it prescriptive.

Famous books like “Good to Great” and “Blue Ocean Strategy” are descriptive. They are witty and interesting but we have no clue if the recommendations actually work. They observe past successes, try to explain them and they DO NOT introduce new concepts to management.

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2 responses to Must-read Books

  1. Prakash,

    Bower’s books are very interesting but the older books have dated context and analogies which make them slightly difficult to relate.

    The book by Edersheim is more than enough.

    Michael

  2. Hi Michael,
    What’s your view on Bower’s books – The Will To Manage and The Will to Lead? Or does “McKinsey’s Marvin Bower” by Elizabeth Haas Edersheim includes the gist from the Bower’s books?

    Thanks
    Prakash

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