Review: Prof G Strategy Sprint

prof-g-strategy-sprint

What is Prof G Strategy Sprint?

It is a 2-week intensive course, taught by Professor Scott Galloway, who is a Professor of Marketing at NYU Stern and Bestselling Author of “The Four” and “Algebra of Happiness”.

During the course, Scott explains the 8 winning strategies of the most innovative and valuable firms in the world, focusing mostly FAANG.

There is also a network of nearly 1,000 students across many industries that you can ideate and discuss the strategies with.

It costs $750 and you can see more information about the course here.

What is the T-Algorithm?

The “8 winning strategies” is the T-Algorithm strategy; a set of strategies that define trillion dollar firms today. T stands for Trillion.

The T-Algorithm consists of (with a product of Apple as an example):

  1. Appealing to Human Instinct – how the company’s’ products or services differentiate itself from the competition and add value to consumers in an intangible way of psychology. (iWatch and accessories)
  2. Accelerant – how the company creates a culture to attract the best talent. (Apple being the most valuable brand of the world)
  3. Growth and Margins – how the company’s strategy reflect the focus and balance of margins and growth. (iPhone and app store)
  4. Bundles – how the company creates relevant services bundle to generate value. (Apple Music)
  5. Vertical Integrations – how the company supply chain is vertically integrated (Apple retail stores)
  6. Benjamin Button (aka Network Effects) – how the company product becomes more valuable when more people use it. (Apple Maps)
  7. Visionary Storytelling – how stories are told and the power of that (Apple product release event)
  8. Likability – how the executives of the company are likeable by the public (Steve Jobs and Tim Cook)

During the course, these 8 strategies are released in 4 modules of 4 videos each, detailing each of the strategies with case studies.

Students then discuss the content over Slack in groups.

At the end of the course, each student is required to submit an exercise applying the T-Algorithm to a company of their choice with recommendations.

Upon completion, this qualifies for a digital certification with a Linkedin badge. Mine like this.

Prof G Certification on Linkedin

Worth noting that the strategy is similar to Scott’s book of “The Four”, but the content in the videos are high production and absorbed easily.

What are the pros and cons of the course?

Pros

  1. It’s a bargain for the quality of learning.
    For $750, you have an almost-celebrity lecturer teaching the strategies of modern technology companies with a unique perspective. I did a formal MBA myself – the Harvard case studies were often a decade old and the quality is sub-optimal compared to what Scott is producing.
  2. The strategies are relevant to today’s world.
    When I enrolled in the sprint, I expected the strategies to largely focus on modern technology companies. However, Scott does try hard to make a point that the strategies are and should apply to all other businesses. The T-Algorithm would be a guiding light on how to create differentiators to your company. Many classmates, who run some sort of service/agency businesses, have meaningful discussions on applying the strategies to their environment. (but it’s hard).
  3. Opens your worldview.
    Scott’s strategy sprint definitely brings a unique perspective on how to value different types of businesses. His POV is sharp and inspiring – I often left the session thinking more about Okta and other businesses. All the participants are from different parts of the world, which added colour to the discussion.

Cons

  1. Networking is over-hyped.
    One of the main benefits the sprint is selling is to network with different classmates of different industries from different parts of the world. The course did bring people together, but the networking does not happen naturally, particularly remotely on Slack (compared to any in-person events). I did make an effort to reach out to classmates on Linkedin to share notes, who have something in common, either located in San Francisco or work in tech/marketing.
  2. The discussions are noisy.
    The discussions within your class occur entirely in Slack, and there are three main channels – 1) your entire class of 1,000 people, 2) your cohort of about 150 people, and 3) your discussion group of about 20 people. You can imagine the discussions in #1 and #2 are just mayhem. The discussion in #3 is kind of hit-or-miss depending on the person starting the discussion.
  3. Some material overlaps.
    If you have read Scott’s book “The Four” or listened to his podcast “The Prof G Show with Scott Galloway”, the material or case studies is not very far off from what he discussed in the sprint. His POV on Apple or Peloton does not change much from 2019 to 2020. Well – you may argue the COVID factor makes him/ the market even more bullish.

Conclusion

Overall, I did have a positive experience.

The spring was a great opportunity to challenge myself to learn something meaningful out of my day-to-day job while we are all in shelter-in-place.

If you want to enrol the course, do make a list of what you want to get out of it. That may be helpful in maximizing the value of it.

If you like what you read, send me a message on Linkedin.