How Conscious Consumers Will Fuel the Future of Business

"Elevated Economics is a must-read for every business leader."
- Rob Howard - vice president, Target

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About The Book

The future of business will be fueled by conscious consumers. Elevated Economics decisively outlines the business case for embracing ESG. These established trends are already driving massive change, and they will only accelerate in the future. Business leaders must recognize that in order to win, they need a roadmap to navigate the Elevated Economy and reap the rewards of doing well by doing good.


Elevated Economics is a must-read for every business leader. Consumers are increasingly making purchasing decisions based on a new paradigm. Richard Steel identifies this new reality and offers solutions all in one fell swoop. Leaders will be using this book to rethink their marketing and product strategy for years to come.”

Rob Howard, vice president

“The old way of doing business is already dead--it just doesn't know it yet. Elevated Economics delivers an essential wake-up call to business leaders to embrace the future, illuminating what has changed and how they must adapt. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to win in this new economy.”

Drew Fraser, CEO
Method Products

“Richard Steel reminds us that there is more to life and business than maximizing shareholder value. When Harvard Business School was created, Dean Edwin Gay said 'the purpose of business is to make a decent profit decently.' That’s what sensible investors will demand of the management teams they back.”

William Sahlman, professor
Harvard Business School

Elevated Economics ties together three powerful discontinuities facing all companies: customers behaving differently, investors acting differently and competitors responding differently. Steel frames a powerful argument for change with a pragmatic approach on 'how to.'”

George Riedel, senior lecturer
Harvard Business School

Elevated Economics persuasively makes the case, aligned with what we see in the millions of reviews of companies on Glassdoor, that companies with a strong sense of mission and purpose outperform their peers. Doing the right thing and shareholder returns are not in conflict. Companies that do good attract the best talent and connect more deeply with their customers, which is ultimately good for business.”

Christian Sutherland-Wong, CEO

“The world is different now and businesses have to adjust. Elevated Economics helps guide decision makers to make smart choices, and when done correctly, both the consumer and company win.”

Blake Mycoskie, founder
TOMS Shoes

“We are at a turning point in the history of capitalism. Companies are becoming accountable not only for their economic performance but for their contribution to shared value. Richard Steel offers a blueprint for how to leverage and contribute to these changes by focusing on purpose, inclusion, and social and environmental progress. Business leaders – from aspiring entrepreneurs to managers of the largest enterprises – will benefit from his timely insight.”

Scott Stern, professor

“Richard Steel has written a playbook for navigating the new business paradigm that we all find ourselves immersed in. Our customers and candidates expect and deserve more. Elevated Economics lays out intentional and actionable steps backed by data to help us all best adapt to this fast changing landscape.”

Aaron Kraljev, former vice president
Wells Fargo

“As an impact investor, I appreciate Steel's recognition of how essential new attitudes towards investing will be to building a new economy that serves us all. His breadth of experience and concrete examples make Elevated Economics an important and actionable guide.”

Morgan Simon, founding partner
Candide Group

“Through compelling real-world examples, Elevated Economics makes a strong case that purpose and stakeholder focus are core elements of successful businesses. Driven by consumers and investors, this trend is only accelerating and corporate leadership who ignore it do so at their peril.”

Vikram Gandhi, senior lecturer
Harvard Business School

About The Author

Richard Steel is an American entrepreneur, investor, and consultant. He has run private and public companies, served on nonprofit boards, and advised the White House Business Council. He is an advisor to large and mid-size companies, governments, startups, and nonprofits. Currently, he is the CEO of an investment firm and chairs a philanthropic fund. Richard is an alumnus of Harvard Business School where he serves on the Alumni Board.