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House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch and Then Tell You the Time

House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch and Then Tell You the Time [Kindle Edition]

Martin Kihn
4.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (4 Kundenrezensionen)

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  • Sprache: Englisch
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From Booklist

With sharp wit, consultant Kihn tears down myths surrounding the highly profitable and revered management-consulting industry. Presenting stories from his own career in a large management-consulting firm, this tell-all book sketches a picture of a consulting firm with teams of brilliant professionals who are hired by companies that pay millions of dollars in fees for an analysis of their organization and its processes. The author contends that consultants merely provide information the client already knows, and he offers insight into the effect consultants have on the company's employees and their culture. Language plays an enormous role in dealings both within and outside the firm, and the inclusion of a dictionary of important words for management consultants is revealing and entertaining. No activity avoids Kihn's scathing pen, including his highly critical analysis of business books. This will be popular among those engaged in consulting as well as clients who pay dearly for their advice. Mary Whaley
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved


This highly intelligent and deeply funny debut memoir skewers a segment of the economy that nearly every white-collar worker has learned to fear and loathe: consultancies. . . . His reconstructed dialogue from within his (unnamed) firm and from his time serving clients is alone with the price of admission.—Publishers Weekly

A more entertaining book about business is unlikely to appear for a long time.—

Exceedingly smart and funny ... Kihn's breezy, Jay McInerney-inspired writing renders the damnable daily life of the management consultant precisely, often hilariously.—


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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen
Von Al P.
Format:Kindle Edition|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
Das Buch ist nett und leicht geschrieben und beinhaltet viele Anekdoten. Mit der Serie ist es aber (außer durch das Thema) nicht wirklich verbunden - was nicht schlecht ist, aber einige vielleicht enttäuschen könnte.
Ich habe dieses Buch sehr genossen, könnte gleichzeitig aber auch viele Informationen über Consulting und Business-Schooling mitnehmen.
Eine absolute Kaufempfehlung, für alle die sich - nicht wirklich streng - mit Consulting auseinandersetzen. Eine Anleitung mit Consultants umzugehen oder einer zu werden ist es aber nicht.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen anders als die serie 5. September 2013
Von roo
Format:Taschenbuch|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
selbst wer business english-kundig ist, kann hier eine Menge dazulernen. Analytischer als die Serie, involviert stärker. Empfehlenswert für alle, die Unternehmensberater bezahlen, sie steuern, mit ihnen arbeiten, welche sind oder welche kennen
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Format:Taschenbuch|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
First of all I want to mention that I do recommend this book to people interested in consulting. The author presents easy to read and entertaining anecdotes from his time at Booz & Company. He does this with a healthy portion of humor and sarcasm. However, at times the reader gets a bit lost in the author's ramblings about certain topics. The book feels a bit unstructured, which is ironic because management consultants are said to be on of the most structured and linear people on the planet. In addition, one does not really learn anything new about the consulting industry. The book does not extend beyond the usual clichés. Anyone who has seen the show on tv will also notice that it has almost nothing in common with the book. Three stars for the witty writing. Overall, this book is worth reading.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Highly Recommended! 14. Juli 2005
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This unusual, entertaining business book covers one man's experience working for an unnamed, but top-line consulting firm. Author Martin Kihn tells unvarnished stories about working with clients who mix ambiguous problems with political infighting. The consulting firms he describes come off as unbalanced organizations with barely functioning teams and aged political hierarchies. Then there are the bleak working conditions and long weeks of travel, described in ways that completely dispel the glamorous myth of the globetrotting consultant. Throughout, Kihn keeps the story moving and funny, even though he sometimes gets too caught up in his own cleverness. Now and then, he seems to restrain his real opinion and the resulting conclusion seems flimsy compared to his other material, but soon he gets back to deflating jargon and popping myths. Even though it is an additional rock being hurled in the hailstorm of consultant bashing, we recommend this funny, informative book to anyone working with consultants or considering a consulting career.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 3.0 von 5 Sternen  53 Rezensionen
21 von 25 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Funny, Realistic Intro to Consulting, Although Highly Negative 16. Januar 2007
Von Jason E. Bradfield - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This book is a fast, fun read and a fairly realistic introduction to the negative aspects of consulting. Anyone considering a consulting career should read it to understand the downsides. The author is clearly a skilled writer, far better than most business writers. He is also very funny. It is rare to read a book that is a quick read, funny, and informative all at the same time. That's why I gave it five stars. The author touches on several aspects of consulting. He discusses a bit of his experience at Columbia Business Schools. The bulk of the book is taken up by his discussion of a couple of his consulting assignments. This is very much a worse-case scenario book. Most people don't have such a negative experience, but it is vitally important for those interested in consulting to be aware of what can and often does go wrong. I also think the author may not have been all that seriously interested in consulting as a career.

This book is especially useful for those who are trying to decide whether or not to go into consulting; many people become consultants just because that's what others do or because there is supposedly a lot of money to be made. Read this book before you make the decision to target consulting firms in your job hunt. If you read it and still are excited about consulting, then you will probably be a pretty good "fit' for consulting.
13 von 17 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Right Up There with Stanley Bing 7. September 2005
Von Kendall V. Scott - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This riotous book stands with the work of Mr. Bing, my longtime favorite "business" writer. The idea that anyone would read this to learn anything about management consulting strikes me as pretty silly; after all, at the end of the day, Marty's not trying to boil the ocean--he's simply trying to put a stake in the ground and then add value so he can increase his billability just in case he gets counseled out. (Hey, Marty, did I pass my consultant-speak audition?) Start at the end, with the faux acknowledgments--"negativity of the pissants around him," brilliant! It's FUNNY, people! Get a grip!
15 von 20 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen If you are a consultant you will relate to parts of it... 18. Juli 2005
Von Garrett - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
A friend reccomended this book to me. It more depressed me than anything (because it so accurately describes me)

There are some good points in the book:

1. The consulting feedback and review process is a joke

2. All consulting firms are the same, except McKinsey which is just the same but better

3. Travel is probably the worst part of the job and points are mostly worthless

There are some things that made me think:

1. Why do I hate Sheratons but tolerate Marriott

2. Why am I obsessed with my luggage

3. Why do I get so excited at recruiting events

He also accurately describes a lot of the unspoken rules. Such as never eating in groups in the caffeteria.

There are a few funny bits as well.

I certanly wouldn't compare it to Liars Poker (not even in the same league) and the point about not having a point is well taken, its a bit rambling.

If you are a consultant you won't be able to put it down. Everyone else will just scratch their heads.
19 von 27 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Dark, funny and on the money.. 6. Juni 2005
Von Red&Read - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
From someone who works in this industry, Martin Kihn has hit a lot of nails on the head in the mode of 'Snapshots from Hell' and 'Liars Poker'.

If you are thinking of becoming a management/ strategy or technology consultant read this book before making that decision.

Kihn lifts the lid on the self serving consulting firms, their inability to proffer little more than repackaged data and the clever use of a language and culture to protect their vested interests and hideous cultures.

Companies run by partners and VP's, whom a large proportion are sociopathic and driven by personal greed. Men and women prepared to sacrifice their home lives, health, relationships and quality of life (universal payback) for the Babylonian mirages of money, vanity, status and ego ..

This book is funny and dark too. .. Kihn (former MTV writer and Columbia MBA) joins Booz Allen Hamilton in New York and injects the book with a fresh ironic wit to make his points. His depth of insight is valuable as well as his ability to extract some of the more dysfunctional elements of an industry built on intellectual snobbery, stabbings and shamings. The book is thought provoking and although not written in a moralizing style it contains Kihn's values that are good. He empathises with those would may lose their jobs in the companies the consultants work with. He explains the truth of the devaluation of humanity within this sphere as people are fired and the game is to survive, and not look over your shoulder and consider those whom you have trampled on to do so.

Two other core truths Martin Kihn exposes are

1. Consultants actually don't know much. Therefore there is a series of cover ups and masks used to hide this fact and it is a game of manipulation via smoke, mirrors, vocabulary and image. Then it is about reprocessing data and packaging it nicely for the client... for a lot of money. That only comes about because people BELIEVE in consultants however the majority of these people have a vested interest in the consulting industry or have too much of your money in their budgets (read government departments for one).

2. The demands made on young consultants. The shams and tricks to get young people to work in these firms and with a deluded enthusiasm believe that

a) They are highly valuable contributors to society/ the economy

b) The best of the best (breeding mentality ground for young sociopaths)

It does not make easy reading thinking what consultants have to do in their early years `to make it'. The travel, denial of family, the hours and the ghastly culture in which their teams works. At best you feel a sense of compassion at worst you feel that McKinsey, Accenture etc are worth a visit from Amnesty International.

Basically if you believe the hype of these firms and that they make a valid contribution to industry, society and the lives they touch, you will see this book as a Michael Mooresque expose. You won't get it.. as contempt prior to investigation with see that the book gets swiftly binned.

If you are willing to be open minded or hold a Master in healthy questioning it's a must for the beach or bench...

Thank you Mr Kihn for writing this book......
12 von 17 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Disappointing 16. Mai 2005
Von Notorious JC - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
I was looking forward to reading more about exactly how poorly and ill-fitted to their jobs management consultants are, but the actual meat of the book strays far from the title of the book. It seems like most of the book was spent bashing HBS and Mckinsey people, the week-long training session the author was forced to go through (which was pretty funny however), and about office politics in the aftermath of layoffs.

He only really discussed two projects that he worked on. Moreover, his writing style is very difficult to follow. He jumps around from topic to topic and then jumps back to the original topic without much warning. The last couple chapters that he spends actually discussing one major assignment he works on is by far the most interesting.

Overall, the book is worth reading if you're interested in the consulting industry, but if you just want a funny read look elsewhere.
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