House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch Then Tell You the Time

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9780446695015: House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch Then Tell You the Time

A former stand-up comic who decides to go straight and get a real job by going to business school, Marty Kihn writes of his first two years at his consulting career. In it, he details the essence of the life he leads: how consultants are always on the prowl to make major corporations into clients, then tell them little or nothing about what they already do, and of course, speak with great authority on topics they know nothing about. All the while, Kihn writes, management consultants receive erroneous feedback from mean-spirited colleagues while being used as a pawn in bloody corporate power struggles. It's all in a day's work - but hey, it pays the bills quite handsomely.

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About the Author:

Martin Kihn is a Columbia Business School graduate and Emmy-nominated comedy writer. A graduate of Yale University as well, he was head writer for MTV's Pop-Up Video and has written for Spy, New York and GQ.

From Publishers Weekly:

Complete with an appendix of terms like "brain dump," "pulse check" and "swag" (an acronym for "smart wild-assed guess"), this somewhat disjointed, highly intelligent and deeply funny debut memoir skewers a segment of the economy that nearly every white-collar worker has learned to fear and loathe: consultancies. Kihn, who has been nominated for an Emmy as a comedy writer, went to Columbia Business School and has spent the last few years working as a consultant; he writes the "Consultant Debunking Unit" column for Fast Company. Kihn argues that many consultants know little or nothing about the firms they're hired to help; furthermore, he contends, they often offer companies information that companies already have. For him, the consulting industry is a shell game, imparting an air of authority and expertise rather than actual authority and expertise. To achieve the illusion, Kihn says, consultants use mechanisms ranging from legions of Harvard MBAs in Oxford shirts to reams of incomprehensible blather presented as winning corporate wisdom. His reconstructed dialogue from within his (unnamed) firm and from his time serving clients is alone worth the price of admission, as is his relentless taunting (by name) of McKinsey, Deloitte & Touche and others.
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