Measure What Matters Book Summary - Measure What Matters Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

Measure What Matters summary

John Doerr

How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs

4.5 (565 ratings)
20 mins
Table of Contents

    Measure What Matters
    Summary of 6 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 6

    OKRs were born at microchip giant Intel, where the author worked in the 1970s.

    The plots of many classic stories and fairy tales hinge on the pursuit of love. But who would’ve thought that love would play a central role in a somewhat less fanciful tale – that of the author discovering business objectives and key results, or OKRs for short?

    In the summer of 1975, author John Doerr was trying to win back his ex-girlfriend Ann. He knew she had a job in Silicon Valley, but he wasn’t sure where. As fate would have it, however, he found her working at Intel, the company where he’d just scored an internship.

    The love story ended happily in the end, with him and Ann getting back together (they’re still married). And as their romance reignited, another inspiring story began: the author’s discovery of OKRs.

    The luminary behind OKRs was Andy Grove, one of Intel’s cofounders. Then the vice president, he’d go on to become the CEO, and his visionary leadership would be integral to the company’s transformation from a small business into the global giant it is today. The use of OKRs was, of course, a central part of his approach.

    After getting hired, the author attended one of Grove’s seminars, where he explained that OKRs aren’t about what you know, but what you do with what you know. If you want things to get done, execution must trump knowledge.

    For example, one of Intel’s objectives (Os) at the time was to be number one in the midrange computer component industry. By setting just a few such objectives, Grove explained, the company as a whole could truly focus on pursuing them..

    But how would they know that they’d reached this objective? That’s where key results (KRs) come in, Grove went on. For example, one KR at the time was to “win” ten designs for the Intel 8085 microprocessor – a win being every time the microprocessor was used in products designed by other companies.

    Such KRs had to be measured simply with a clear yes or no. Everyone involved – known as contributors – would have to be able to understand whether the KR had been met or not, without argument.

    By implementing this management system at Intel, Grove was able to grow the company by 40 percent every year throughout his eleven-year tenure as CEO.

    Seeing the impact of OKRs in action, the author began a lifetime of commitment to spreading this revolutionary management philosophy to other companies.

    Want more?
    Read or listen to the key ideas
    from 7,000+ titles

    Key ideas in Measure What Matters

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is Measure What Matters about?

    Measure What Matters (2018) chronicles John Doerr’s lifelong journey of helping organizations implement objectives and key results – otherwise known as OKRs. With the help of OKRs, companies like Google and nonprofits like the Gates Foundation have been able to transform the way they set goals to reach new heights.

    Who should read Measure What Matters?

    • CEOs and managers looking to drive their organization’s growth
    • Founders looking to implement a healthy, transparent workplace culture right from the get-go
    • Employees sick of annual performance reviews

    About the Author

    John Doerr is an American investor and venture capitalist who has mentored countless CEOs and founders on the magic of OKRs. In addition to working at venture-capital firm Kleiner Perkins, he served as a member of President Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

    Categories with Measure What Matters

    Books like Measure What Matters

    People ❤️ Blinkist
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked

    Start growing with Blinkist now
    28 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    Of Blinkist members create a better reading habit*
    *Based on survey data from Blinkist customers
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial