How to Solve Big Problems, with ex-McKinsey Senior Partner Kevin P. Coyne

How to Solve Big Problems, with ex-McKinsey Senior Partner Kevin P. Coyne

20 Episodes

We all face lots of problems. Some you just wing an answer—because either (a) there is not that much at stake, or (b) the answer is obvious, or (c) you don’t really have much choice or time anyway.

But there are times when it really does matter that you get a great answer. Those times are what this course is about. Let’s assume that there is enough at stake that you want to do a great job.

If there is a lot at stake, and you believe there is value to a “far better than average” answer, you cannot just go to Google, or to some pre-existing framework or McKinsey’s bank of reports.

By definition, those will give you the same answer as everyone else has access to.
And they will give you the answer to someone else’s problem, not yours.
So, you have to get to a great answer, not just the answer anyone else would come up with.

In this course, we are going to focus on hard-analysis problem solving using the techniques I applied at McKinsey as a Senior Partner.
In hard analysis problem solving, economic or scientific optimization is the key criterion.
In soft side problem solving where political acceptability is actually the key criterion, it is defined by human behavior and motivations.

First rule: I solve it for ME. I must believe it. What would I actually do?

This is a practical course giving you advice you can immediately apply.

Kevin P. Coyne is a founder of Coyne Scientific. He is the former Director and co-leader of both McKinsey’s Worldwide Strategy Practice and CEO transitions practice, and the host of The Consulting Offer II

Kevin attended the Harvard Business School after his junior year of college. He simultaneously graduated from both Rice University and Harvard in 1978 and joined McKinsey as the youngest associate ever and one of the youngest principals ever appointed. During a 27 year career at McKinsey Kevin advised clients on a variety of issues and across a broad range of industries including banking, consumer goods, venture capital, industrial, telecommunications and the public sector. His primary area of focus was corporate strategy. He has worked one-on-one with over twenty-five different CEOs.

Kevin has been an active leader in civic roles throughout his career. He served as an Executive Assistant and sole policy advisor to the Deputy Secretary of the United States Treasury, the second ranking department official in the Reagan Administration.

In that role he advised on Brazil’s economic growth, served as an intermediary between Britain and Argentina after the Falklands war and advised on opening Japan’s capital markets. He recently co-led several pro-bono efforts, including the following:

Setting up the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund
Leading the Atlanta and London Olympic Games committees on several initiatives
Leading the team supporting former US President Carter on the Atlanta Project helping low-income citizens

Kevin has co-written 6 Harvard Business Review articles, 12 McKinsey Quarterly articles and 2 bestselling business books, as well as many other articles across influential business publications.

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How to Solve Big Problems, with ex-McKinsey Senior Partner Kevin P. Coyne