Strategy Beyond the Hockey Stick: People, Probabilities, and Big Moves to Beat the Odds
Beat the odds with a bold strategy
We’ve all seen hockey stick business plans before. A future where results sail confidently upward, but with a dip coinciding with next year’s budget.
CEOs usually rely on their experience and business smarts to figure out which of those hockey sticks are real, and which are fake. But all too often getting to a “yes,” competing for...more
The villain is the social side of strategy. (c)
A funny take on the fallacies of modern 'strategy' considerations. Very light.
The 'you are your numbers' is repeated throughout like a mantra. Thank God, they managed to do without MECE and 'not boiling the ocean', this time around.
As the strategy process starts, the team agrees that this year you will avoid huge documents with 150 slides and endless appendices. You commit to having real conversations about the future of the business and the ...more
1. This could have easily been a McK Quarterly / HBR article. The book format feels like an overkill for the underlying idea. As the result, there is an abundance of somewhat repetitive examples that perform a filler role.
2. The book has a relatively niche target audience: folks that work in corporate strategy, corporate C-suite and strategy consultants. If you are not working for or consulting a large ...more
But there are some good insights under all the MBA/Fortune 500 ...more
Participants at these strategy meetings sit through a typical detailed slide presentation in which only one course of ...more
I did it out of respect for the Firm and may well claim that the authors mostly expanded a great material for McKinsey Quarterly article into a book. There may be many reasons for that, but it feels like they wanted the world to know about a handful of amazing instruments in strategy. Especially after a ...more
The book talks about the social side of strategy where managers are compelled to play games to ensure their agendas are met, and thus it is the job of the ...more
It was clearly aimed at CEOs, board rooms, and strategists at the world's largest companies ($7B in annual revenue was a lower threshold for some of their recommendations).
The book covered the problems with most strategic planning processes, outlined 10 levers in three categories (endowments, trends, and moves) to affect real change, and gave practical advice on how ...more
The authors examined publicly available information on dozens of variables for the world’s 2,393 largest corporations between 2010 and 2014, and found the levers that explain more than 80 percent of the up-drift and down-drift in corporate performance.
They propose "eight shifts to unlock strategy.":
From annual planning to strategy as a journey.
From getting to "yes" to debating real alternatives.
From peasant butter to picking your ...more
McKinsey has collected a lot of data on corporate performance over the years. I liked that the authors gave examples of firms other than your standard Kodak, Apple, etc. Unfortunately I also felt a lot of it was used as filler for the book. That being said, there are some useful insights on why ...more
I absolutely enjoyed the pace and story of the book.
The structure is quite logical, that had all answers just on the next page for the questions that were popping out in my head while reading.
Overall quality of the material is solid and I at last we can see more examples and cases than Apple, Airbnb, Nokia, Kodak.
I definitely recommend this book for everyone related to the strategy.
One caveat, why weren’t financial companies in the data set, and do the lessons apply to them too?
A different book amongst a lot of strategy books