The roundabout path to strategy

The traditional idea behind strategy is the deployment of resources against some objectives. Each year, organizations engage in processes akin to magical rites with the goal of coming up with a plan. We know what to do, we know why we should do it and we know how to do

Overcoming impostor syndrome by asking good questions

Impostor syndrome is when you experience the sentiment of not being enough, even though you might be performing well. In the long run, having the persistent fear of being exposed as a fraud can negatively impact how we perform. In strategy consulting, the impostor syndrome can be strong, as you

How to evaluate the quality of business books

In What Makes Good Models and How to Use Them, Emmanuel Derman explains that in social science, you have to work hard to have a usable theory of anything. The challenge with most business books is that they do not make the difference between theories and models. Theories tell us

Organizational debt and conceptual clarity

In his book, The Messy Middle, Scott Belsky describes “organizational debt”: Leaders who can’t make tough decisions cause their teams to accumulate “organizational debt.” Like the notion of “technical debt,” which is the accumulation of old code and short-term solutions that collectively burden a team over time, organizational debt

The strategy idea maze

A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin defines strategy as an integrated set of choices that uniquely positions a firm to create sustainable competitive advantage and superior value relative to their competitors. Beside its use in military, the use of strategy in business is relatively new. Strategy as a function

Lessons from Charles Sirois, CEO of Telesystem

Charles Sirois is the founder, chairman and CEO of Telesystem, a Canadian private equity company. In 1978 he launched his business career by taking over its family-owned paging company. The paging company became the leading player in Canada and 1987 he merged his companies with Bell Cellular to form BCE

Lessons from Stephen A. Jarislowsky, CEO of Jarislowsky Fraser

Stephen A. Jarislowsky is the founder, chairman and CEO of Jarislowsky Fraser Limited, which he built into one of the largest and most successful investment management firms in Canada, with over C$40 billion in assets under management, primarily institutional and ultra high net worth clients. In May 2018, Scotiabank

Lessons from Gerry Schwartz, CEO of Onex

Gerry Schwartz is the founder, chairman and CEO of Onex Corporation, a private equity and credit investor and manager founded in 1984. Schwartz worked alongside Jerome Kohlberg, Jr., who later became a founding partner in Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, one of the first LBO fund. As of March 31, 2019, Onex
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