How To Hire a PMC Assassin: Professional Managerial Class McKinsey Consultant vs Private Military Company Wagner Mercenary
The uncanny similarities between America's PMC McKinsey and Russia's PMC Wagner
Comrades: What do an American consulting firm and Russian mercenary group have in common? Much more than you’d think. Join me on this classic Yuri thought exercise.
PMC McKinsey is the top Professional Managerial Class strategy consulting firm, while PMC Wagner is the top Private Military Company mercenary group. Both are paid enormous piles of cash to clean up messes for powerful people. Their primary missions are to reduce headcount. McKinsey consultants use laptops, Excel, and Powerpoint as their weapons, while Wagner mercenaries use AK-47s, sniper rifles, and missiles. Anytime you see McKinsey or Wagner parachute in, bad things are about to happen. They move from one engagement to another, leaving a trail of destruction in their wake with no consequences for their actions.
Both McKinsey and Wagner are owned and operated by a shadowy group of wealthy, politically connected partners who are not accountable to anyone. They each have around 40,000 employees staffed on engagements around the world. McKinsey troops are stationed in windowless conference rooms, while Wagner troops are stationed in the trenches of Bakhmut and other hellholes. Both recruit from places with high concentrations of sociopaths; McKinsey’s pipeline is the demoralized DIEvy League while Wagner’s is from Russian prisons. Employee attrition rates are high. The average tenure at McKinsey/Wagner is only a few years and <5% make it to partner level. Both companies have done extensive work for entities tied to the Kremlin.
Both firms are led by bald guys, though one appears to have much more testosterone than the other:
The equality lounge at Davos was sponsored by McKinsey, Bain, BCG, Deloitte and the WEF Wehrmacht. Ironically, they are the most hierarchical and nepotistic companies in the world. Partners can hire analysts who are offspring of the elite and force them to pull all-nighters reformatting slides. If Goldman Sachs is the vampire squid, then McKinsey is the zombie octopus. Its tentacles reach every Fortune 500 boardroom and increasingly governments. For millions of dollars, they steal your watch to tell you the time. Its business model is to groom young princelings into top executives, who then hire McKinsey as cover. If it goes well, great. If it doesn’t, then we did everything we could because we hired the smartest people at McKinsey. It’s a win-win situation for everyone at the top, lose-lose for everyone else.
Infamous McKinsey failures include:
CNN+: forecasted 1,000x higher viewership than it actually received
AT&T: forecasted 1,000x lower cell phone penetration than what actually happened
AOL/TimeWarner: one of the biggest M&A disasters in history
Purdue Pharma: pushing opioids and death for profit
South Africa: bribery state capture of Eskom and Trasnet
Saudi Arabia: crackdown on dissidents
Canada: advising the Trudeau regime on COVID policy and how to raise the population to 100 million by 2100
MIO Partners: McKinsey ran its own internal hedge fund using partner money, which was fined by the SEC for the obvious conflict of interest and access to insider information
House of Lies sums up how high priced strategy consultants operate:
PMC McKinsey alums have caused more destruction than PMC Wagner. Several have been imprisoned for crimes. The loveliest ones include:
Jeff Skilling: former CEO of Enron
Rajat Gupta: former Head of McKinsey who passed insider trading information to his hedge fund buddy Raj Rajaratnam
Chelsea Clinton: one of many elite scions who passed through the McKinsey finishing school
Pete Buttgieg: the Manchurian candidate and definition of empty suit
Susan Rice: Obama lackey
Lael Brainard: Federal Reserve Board
Mario Draghi: Prime Minster of Italy
Mark Carney: former governor of the Bank of England
Sundar Pichai: CEO of Google
Sheryl Sandberg: COO of Facebook
Tidjane Thiam: former CEO of Credit Suisse
Carlos Watson: fraudulent CEO of Ozy Media
I know several McKinsey types in real life and they remind me of Patrick Bateman:
The ancient consultant vs banker feud:
A deep-dive on McKinsey’s worst cases:
Frank Sobotka from The Wire sums up modern American capitalism:
I love how to this day consultants can't give you a straight answer on what they actually contribute.
It's almost condescension shrouded in the latest corporate speak.
I like the statement on the sign at the equality lounge at Davos—‘The place for conscious leaders’. Does that mean you have to be awake to get in?