Cracked It!

Cracked It!

Cracked It!

Cracked it!

How to solve big problems and sell solutions like top strategy consultants

For most of us, solving complex problems and selling the solutions doesn’t come naturally and we haven’t been taught how to do it well. In Cracked It!, seasoned strategy professors and consultants Bernard Garrette, Corey Phelps and Olivier Sibony show us how, using a rigorous, practical and proven four-step approach.

Building on tried-and-tested (but rarely revealed) methods of top strategy consultants, research in cognitive psychology, and the latest advances in design thinking, they provide a step-by-step process and toolkit that will help you tackle any challenging business problem. Using detailed case examples, the authors guide us through each step in the process: from how to state, structure and then solve problems to how to sell the solutions.

Written in an accessible and engaging style, Cracked It! provides compelling stories of both good and bad problem solving and solution selling from diverse contexts. We learn how a new CEO quickly sized up a problem facing an aging retail chain and implemented a strategic solution that worked for him before, only to experience disastrous results; how an industrial designer of MRI scanners saw his design problem through the eyes of a child, leading him to reimagine the scanner experience; and how a seasoned scientist failed to convince people that too much sugar causes obesity, while a shrewd rival successfully sold an alternative story incriminating fatty food.

Cracked It! will be an indispensable manual for anyone interested in creating value by helping their organizations crack the problems that matter most.

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Bernard Garrette

Professor of Strategy, HEC Paris

Bernard Garrette is Professor of Strategy and Business Policy at HEC Paris. He serves as management consultant and business educator for various organizations, from start-ups to multinational corporations. Numerous business schools across the world use his award-winning books and case studies. Bernard has been MBA Dean at HEC Paris, consultant with McKinsey, and visiting professor at IESE, London Business School, and the University of Cambridge. While he publishes his research in top academic journals, he has a secret life as a fiction writer and amateur artist.

Corey Phelps

Professor of Strategy & Associate Dean of Executive Education, Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University

Corey Phelps is Professor of Strategy, Associate Dean of Executive Education, and Marcel Desautels Faculty Fellow at the Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University. Formerly a professor at HEC Paris and the University of Washington, Corey holds a PhD from the Stern School of Business at New York University. His research and teaching, which are focused on innovation and strategy, have received several prestigious awards. Corey travels the world as a keynote speaker, corporate trainer and consultant to help organizations become more innovative and strategically agile.

Olivier Sibony

Affiliate Professor of Strategy, HEC Paris

Olivier Sibony is Affiliate Professor of Strategy at HEC Paris, where he teaches problem solving and strategic decision making. Previously, he was a Senior Partner of McKinsey & Company, where he spent 25 years advising the leaders of global corporations, and held a number of firm leadership roles. Olivier is the author of a book, Réapprendre à Décider, and of articles in various publications including Harvard Business ReviewMcKinsey Quarterly and California Management Review. Olivier is a graduate of HEC Paris and holds a PhD from Université Paris Sciences et Lettres – Dauphine.

“If you want to master problem solving, buy this book. I used it the day after I started reading it.”
—Neil Janin, Chairman Bank of Georgia and Senior Partner Emeritus, McKinsey & Co.

“Too many companies fail because of bad strategic problem solving. This book is full of frameworks and tips to help you avoid that fate.”
—Adam Grant, New York Times bestselling author of Give and Take, Originals, and Option B with Sheryl Sandberg

“Strategy is problem solving – an important, subtle and pervasive skill for which business practitioners receive little formal training. Cracked It! provides a valuable and practical guide to the art, from framing the problem through to communicating and selling the solution, which should be invaluable to practitioners and consultants”
—Martin Reeves, Senior Partner & Managing Director, Boston Consulting Group

“Written by a trio of leading experts on strategy who draw on decades of rigorous academic research and consulting experience, Cracked It! offers a crystal-clear approach to frame and solve challenging strategic issues. A must-read for executives, consultants, and business school students.”
—Laurence Capron, co-author of Build, Borrow or Buy and Professor of Strategy and Dean of Faculty, INSEAD

“When dealing with a major business issue, every decision maker faces his own cognitive biases that can trip him up. Cracked it! provides practical, value-creating and proven insight to develop and sell sound solutions by overcoming these biases.”
—Stéphane Richard, Chairman and CEO, Orange

“The ABSOLUTE reference handbook on problem solving! It is clearly unique and it smartly introduces an amazing richness of methods, through cases and easy-to-understand frameworks. I have to say… I love it!”
—Jean-Baptiste Voisin, Chief Strategy Officer, LVMH

Read an excerpt of each chapter on the publisher’s site.

Cracked It! Animated Trailer

Why you need a book on problem-solving

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