The book is an alternating mix of an analysis of management science and a personal story in the consulting business. The analysis shows (or tries to show) that the publications of several management gurus do not stand up to scientific standards and that some of their results and recommendations are simply made up. Yet, when this book shows how easily you can make up something in print, you wonder whether this book, too, is just made up. If it is, it is nevertheless very clever and entertaining.
The personal story makes reading much easier and the mixture of fact and fiction is well balanced. the author avoids all the simplifications and repetitions of many other books in this area. Instead, everything is presented with a sceptical mind set and a good dose of humor.
Very readable, interspersed with highly amusing anecdotes of one who's lived it, very well researched, slightly depressing - wonderful book! hmmm - is it a sign of resignation that I find it only slightly depressing?
What I enjoyed most was the chronological presentation and subsequent radical dissection of various economic/managerial theories - all you MBA students out there - throw out your text books and read this! A lot more fun and (to a cetrain way of thinking, unfortunately) a lot more substance contained within ...
Don't be fooled by the trashy silvery shine and the goony antique-thinker-statue-wears-red-tie-"joke": That‘s definitely a book worth reading! Entertaining (once even made laugh out loud in the subway) yet insightful. And a quick and easy read for all, who are sceptical about quick and easy solutions in business and society.
Matthew Stewart provides a wonderfully readable history of management consulting and, in the process, destroys many of the myths surrounding the legends and tools of managment consulting. After reading this, you will never look at a BCG cash cows chart the same way again.