I'm Dr Matthew Hancocks and Missions That Matter is the result of two decades researching and developing the skills of strategy, leadership and transformation.
In 2013, I set up Missions that Matter to work exclusively with CEOs and other senior executives who want to become true, history-making leaders. I’ve brought this approach to companies including SSE, Impellam, RSA, Syngenta, National Trust, Aviva, Cadent, Exel, Rhodia Fines Organiques, Christian Salvesen, TDG and London Probation Service. During this time, I also developed a research stream to explore my ideas. My original research, published in leading management journals, focuses on analyses of the three dominant management styles: analytical, visionary and agile and sets out my own post-agile, history-making strategic approach.
My approach unites the most advanced strategic methods with deep appreciation of operational expertise and the ethical dilemmas facing executives. I worked for years inside a major corporation serving customers, managing teams, dealing with messes and taking difficult decisions every day. I spent two years driving trucks, stacking boxes, and managing warehouses and transport operations. Before becoming a strategist, I was a quality manager, a research executive, and a marketing manager. That operational experience of the everyday value creation of a company has stayed with me and informed my strategy and leadership work ever since. I worked closely with operational executives to design and lead the strategy process for a major European logistics company. Working with McKinsey & Co, we design and implement methods to assess value chains and ecosystems, develop scenarios, construct client-led business NPVs, and model strategic options and Monte Carlo analyses. I worked with EY's Accelerated Solutions Environment team to incorporate visionary and agile whole-system workshop approaches into our strategic business design. I loved it. But, when the abstraction of these approaches began to take over from the operational heart of the business, it was time for me to start putting them in their proper context. In the 1990s, I launched two agile design and intelligence businesses and worked as a Director at two of the world's leading agile business consultancies: Harthill Consulting and VISION Consulting.
My work is always undertaken in the context of real-world strategic and leadership issues, and I embrace my clients with a challenging and supportive presence throughout.
As a consultant, I describe my style as ‘strategic mentoring’. Occasionally, like most consultants, I will take on the role of knowledgeable expert to teach you a particular technique or idea or the role of process manager to provide a roadmap and narrative of progress and mis-steps. Most often though, as a strategic mentor, I act more like a midwife to your own creative strategizing.
I strongly believe that great organizations are forces for good in society and help others cultivate their own abilities to live better lives. But too many organizations avoid this responsibility and limit their concerns to simply making a profit.
My primary role is to listen and speak in such a way that you’re supported as you think for yourself about how your organization can be better. This does not mean I simply replay back to you what you think, then stand back and applaud. I will question you, challenge you and help you see yourself from other perspectives.
My approach will heighten your sensibility to your own feelings and thoughts about a situation without explicitly shaping them. I encourage you to recognise yourself as a political leader, someone responsible for nurturing and transforming the power and structures of meaning in your organization.
Sometimes, I will point to an issue that may have been overlooked. At other times, I will provoke you into thinking through opposing positions and recognising what’s at stake for the people you serve. But I will always support you to have the courage of your convictions and induce you to act, on the broadest stage and with the fiercest conviction, to reform your organization and the communities you serve. You can rely on me to be truthful, even if, at times, that feels uncomfortable.
I work in short and long-term engagements. For larger transformation programmes, I partner with Harthill Consulting, VISION Consulting, Achieve Breakthrough and Ludic Group to structure company-wide transformations and support them with best-in-class digital platforms.
Every organisation should have a mission that truly matters to them. Do you? For a free initial consultation, please contact me below.