- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (8 February 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1119553024
- ISBN-13: 978-1119553021
- Product Dimensions: 18.3 x 1.5 x 23.1 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 640 g
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 18 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Bulletproof Problem Solving: The One Skill That Changes Everything Paperback – 6 Mar 2019
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From the Back Cover
"Problem solving is the core skill for the twenty-first century. Now, finally, we have a guide to doing it right that any of us can follow."
- Dominic Barton, Global Managing Partner Emeritus, McKinsey & Company
PRAISE FOR BULLETPROOF PROBLEM SOLVING
"We always hired for creative problem solving talent above all else; these guys have cracked the code on a replicable approach for problems large and small. Learn it, practice it!"
— Eric Schmidt, Former Chairman and CEO, Google; Visiting Innovation Fellow, MIT
"Together Charles and Rob have taken problem solving out of the business school classroom and into real life, where it belongs. Utilizing 30 cases, these masters of the art have something to teach all of us."
— James Gorman, Chairman and CEO, Morgan Stanley
"As a former policymaker who argues for moving beyond policy to the broader enterprise of public problem solving, I welcome this volume! The techniques and insights apply, with various modifications, to problems everywhere: personal, professional, public and private, local, national and global."
— Anne-Marie Slaughter, CEO, New America, Former Director of Policy Planning, U.S. Department of State
"Disruption in today's business environment puts problem solving at the top of every leader's challenges. But how? This engaging book puts together a McKinsey team's scientific seven-step approach. From taking a problem apart to rearranging its pieces, to framing it so its solution can be seen, the book presents a must-read analysis for executives and social sector leaders. It excites both the reader's mind and the possibilities for project teams.
— Glenn Hubbard, Dean and Russell L. Carson Professor of Finance and Economics, Columbia Business School
7 straightforward steps to solving any problem with creativity and rigor
Complex problem solving is the core skill for twenty-first century teams. It's the only way to keep up with rapid change. Winning organizations now rely on nimble, iterative problem solving, rather than traditional planning processes. In this book you'll learn the seven-step systematic approach to creative problem solving that will work in any field or industry. It employs a highly visual, logic-tree method that can be applied to any problem, from strategic business decisions to global social challenges. Charles and Rob, with decades of experience at McKinsey & Company and other institutions, provide a toolkit with 30 detailed real-world examples, so you can see exactly how the technique works in action.
About the Author
Charles Conn is CEO of the Rhodes Scholarships in Oxford. Previously, he was a Partner at McKinsey & Company, led a technology start-up to its IPO, and was an early team lead at the Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation in San Francisco.
Robert McLean is Director Emeritus at McKinsey and Company. He led the Australian and New Zealand McKinsey practice for eight years and served on the firm's global Director's Committee.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
To escape such loops, I personally favour the Design Thinking process, because it puts more emphasis on innovations, therefore more in line with model building in science. However, I agree with the authors about both approaches being somewhat complementary in solving difficult problems systematically, perhaps not in quantum physics...
Certainly the 7-Step process is quite in sync with my personal professional experience in trading and investments, even if followed intuitively and without drawings. Was it for traders' lack of communication that computers were quicker to be accepted as replacements in this programmable profession?
Top managers and politicians increase their leverage, their efficiency by communicating, by mapping their decision-making, by sketching a line of progress and also by adding sometimes less modest attributes like "bulletproof" or claims like "changes everything".
This problem solving and communication skill becomes essential in large organisations when addressing various stakeholders. You need to know what people expect to hear or to see before they respect your new proposals, your key decisions. This book offers a robust problem solving process though you still want to read a book on public relations.
Influencing requires linguistically simple, sometimes sign language. Thanks to this book it won't be a secret anymore how to become successful without going deeply into details and you get an idea about McKinsey. Several pages left blank, for personal exercises of course, may in fact speak volumes.
I was struck by a number of distinctive features of the book. First, it lays out a very clear and robust 7-stage process to solve almost any kind of problem. Second, it applies this approach both to big business problems like whether or not to make an acquisition or launch a new product; as well as to recognizable personal issues, like whether to have surgery - to fix "Rob's bad knee" - or what kind of diet to go on.
Oh, and along the way, it addresses co-called "wicked problems" like climate change and obesity. The common theme is that problem-solving requires a rigorous and well-structured process, and a can-do mindset to go with it.
All of this is contained in a beautifully presented book with compelling graphics, which convey the structured and sequential approach, which is the hall-mark of this book. I read it quickly to get the essence of the approach, and then re-read it for detail and nuance.
Rob McLean and Charles Conn bring a ton of experience to this topic - and their shared wisdom and insight shine through. I've spent a lot of my own life in consulting, but I still learned a great deal from this book - indeed I only wish it had been available earlier in my own career.
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