Bill Matassoni A Memoir

Bill Matassoni, a former McKinsey & BCG partner, lays out his life and adventures in this swashbuckling memoir. You may also watch all 20 episodes of The Bill Matassoni Show within the app.

When we think about marketing we tend to think about advertising and the promotion of products and services. Maybe some of us remember Mad Men and Death of a Salesman. This is a story about an entirely unusual career in marketing—unusual because it focuses on selling what its author calls ‘ephemeral” products. It is a success story that takes many twists and turns as it recounts the challenges of promoting products as different as philanthropy and management consulting. How, for example, in the 80’s McKinsey changed its positioning to become a " leadership factory.” It describes how the author learned to convince people to take drugs that won’t cure them but keep them alive and how to convince investors to finance a student’s education.

Selling ephemeral things makes you think differently about marketing. “If you want to succeed,” says Bill Matassoni, "make sure you understand that the game is about constructing new market spaces with genuinely new dimensions. and realize that you need to redesign the systems that surround and deliver the value both you and the customer can now see."

Bill started his management consulting career in 1980 when he joined McKinsey & Company. He was a partner for almost 20 years responsible for building the firm’s reputation and protecting its brand and worked closely with many of his colleagues worldwide. He was publisher of the McKinsey Quarterly and responsible for much of McKinsey’s internal communications, including the creation of McKinsey’s systems to manage and disseminate its practice knowledge.

Bill left McKinsey to join Mitchell Madison Group, a strategy consulting firm he helped take public through its sale to USWeb/CKS in 1999. He thereafter joined The Boston Consulting Group, where he headed for over five years a group responsible for innovation, marketing and communications. As at McKinsey, Bill worked closely with several of BCG’s thought leaders to develop their ideas and turn them into consulting assignments. Bill retired from BCG a few years ago and founded The Glass House Group, a consulting firm that helps professional service firms with branding and marketing issues.

Bill is a graduate of Phillips Andover (1964), Harvard College (B.A. Literature, 1968) and Harvard Business School (M.B.A., 1975).

For many years Bill was on the board of trustees of United Way of America and United Way International. He is now on the board of trustees of First Book and a senior advisor to Ashoka, an organization that invests in social entrepreneurs. He remains interested in the management and marketing of professional services firms and social marketing.
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Updated
June 20, 2018
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