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The Management Myth: Why the "Experts" Keep Getting It Wrongby Matthew Stewart
Synopses & Reviews
A brilliant, not-to-be missed account of the reasons why management thinks the way it does — and why they are flawed. If CEOS, consultants, top managers, and other financial wizards are so smart, how come they screw up so badly? Why is there no correlation whatsoever between a business school education and success in business? Why might you be better off studying something as irrelevant as — philosophy?
In The Management Myth, Stewart offers:
"Stewart (The Courtier and the Heretic) reflects on his unconventional path to becoming a successful management consultant — despite a complete lack of business knowledge or experience, let alone an MBA. He offers an insider's perspective on the industry, revealing the astonishingly high routine consultant fees and the absurdity of leading firms depending on consultants fresh out of school to tell them how to run their business. Following in the footsteps of 'shamans,' consultants 'envelop their work with an aura of sacred mystery' and 'outrageously unjustified' levels of self-confidence to add to their perceived expertise. Gleefully revealing the magician's tricks, Stewart takes readers on a whirlwind tour of how this industry came to be a powerhouse. Filled with fascinating insider anecdotes and featuring a who's who in the consulting world, including Peter Drucker, Michael Porter and Bruce Henderson, this wry, absorbing book will enlighten executives about the value consultants actually bring to their clients." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"At last, a book that knocks the Kings of Consulting off their thrones. The Management Myth is a rare and often very humorous expose on the shenanigans behind the corporate empire..." John Perkins, best-selling author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man and The Secret History of the American Empire
Book News Annotation:
Stewart, a longtime, successful management consultant begins this combination memoir-critique by claiming that management is really about morals and behavior not a set of scientific methods for producing outcomes. Thus, he has set himself at odds with the entire academic discipline of business management. From there he gives his take on the major management gurus of our time, and then exposes us to the very flawed world of management and management consulting. The anecdotes are revealing and the analysis is stimulating. As a tell-all book, this one is thoughtful and won't make Stewart many friends among the ranks of management consultants. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Don't go to business school. Study philosophy.
Combining hands-on experience with contemporary fads in efficiency improvement, empowerment, and strategy, Stewart lays bare how little consultants have really done for the business of others — while making a killing for themselves.
Fresh from Oxford with a degree in philosophy and no particular interest in business, Matthew Stewart might not have seemed a likely candidate to become a consultant. But soon he was telling veteran managers how to run their companies.
Striking fear into the hearts of clients with his sharp analytical tools, Stewart lived in hotel rooms and got fat on expense account cuisine — until, finally, he decided to turn the consultant's merciless, penetrating eye on the management industry itself. Alongside his devastating critique of management 'philosophy' from Frederick Taylor to Tom Peters, Stewart provides a bitingly funny account of his own days in a management consulting firm.
Combining hands-on experience with the theoretical underpinnings of contemporary fads in efficiency improvement, empowerment, and strategy, Stewart knows his stuff, and thus he lays bare how little consultants have really done for the business of others — while making a killing for themselves.
If CEOS, consultants, top managers, and other financial wizards are so smart, how come they screw up so badly? Why is there no correlation whatsoever between a business school education and success in business? Why might you be better off studying something as irrelevant as--philosophy?
In The Management Myth, Stewart offers:
With wit and wisdom, Stewart makes an electrifying case that the questions and insights of management theorists belong not to the sciences but to philosophy, and that, in the final analysis, "a good manager is nothing more or less than a good and well-educated person."
About the Author
Matthew Stewart is a former management consultant and the author of the acclaimed The Courtier and the Heretic: Leibniz, Spinoza, and the Fate of God in the Modern World. He lives with his family in Santa Barbara, California.
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