Summary of Matter


Matter book summary

Editorial Rating



  • Innovative
  • Applicable


Management consultants Peter Sheahan and Julie Williamson report on intensive research they conducted with the leaders of major global corporations to discover how to build companies that “matter.” They learned that successful executives need the courage to challenge tradition, the optimism to envision opportunity amid change and the curiosity to explore uncharted territory. These leaders’ cutting-edge knowledge and flexibility at “the edge of disruption” give them an “elevated perspective” on the market. Their deep connections result in fruitful, “elevated relationships” and their value-based work earns an “elevated impact.” getAbstract recommends this in-depth report to current or future chief executives, leaders and entrepreneurs who want to shape significant organizations. The authors’ excellent case studies, analysis, tips and exercises make it clear that a company that matters delivers deep value to its clients and its community. Here’s how to start building yours.

About the Authors

The author of Flip and Generation Y, Peter Sheahan is the founder and Group CEO of the international consulting firm Karrikins Group, where Julie Williamson, PhD, is a vice president.


Companies That “Matter”

Interviews with corporate leaders worldwide show they share similar strategies for building organizations that “matter” to their industries, employees, customers and communities. They consider their companies’ distinctive capabilities and reputations, and they work with their clients to learn what issues are most important to them and what problems they need to solve. Based on this research, leaders determine which solutions will best serve their clients, add the most market value and open up the widest range of future options. They follow the “matter model” of three intersecting circles: “elevated perspective, elevated relationships and elevated impact.” In 1916, Piggly Wiggly supermarket founder Clarence Saunders realized his customers wanted the freedom to browse his store and choose purchases for themselves. He introduced the shopping cart and launched self-service grocery shopping. The leaders of companies that matter, executives like Saunders, share three vital traits:

  1. The courage to challenge traditional assumptions about business and consumers.
  2. An optimistic vision that perceives opportunities for innovation.
  3. The...

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