Dick Patton


consultant name

Dick Patton Egon Zehnder, Boston


Dick Patton, based in Boston, co-leads Egon Zehnder’s Global CEO Practice. He advises and serves major clients across a spectrum of industries, including consumer products and services, digital media and entertainment, technology, marketing services, communications, hospitality and retail. Dick is a trusted advisor to boards and executive committees with deep experience in CEO and C-suite succession.


Prior to joining Egon Zehnder, Dick held GM, Marketing and Business Development roles with The Coca-Cola Company and Frito-Lay. He also has professional experience in start-ups, the United States Senate, and an advertising agency. Dick earned a BA from Brown University and an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. He serves as a trustee for Groton School.

Dick’s thought leadership about talent development, functional evolution and recruitment has been published in Bloomberg Businessweek, Harvard Business Review and Forbes, among others. He also co-leads the Firm’s annual Leadership Summit at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management.

News and Publications

Comfort with Paradox

Most CEOs and boards name succession, both for the CEO and for business unit leaders, as their biggest strategic challenge. While this leadership challenge exists for every industry, it is particularly acute in the consumer sector, where many of the successive waves of disruption first hit.

Leaders of the Future: Navigating Disruption in Consumer Goods and Retail

Egon Zehnder was privileged to be part of the 60th annual Consumer Goods Forum global summit on 15-17 June 2016. Held in Cape Town, South Africa, the summit provided a window onto the energy and opportunity of Africa— the world’s youngest continent and one of the fastest-growing consumer markets.

AdvertisingAge – CMOs Asked to Align Corporate Culture With Brands

In the past CMOs were mainly responsible for marketing brands to the outside world. Today’s CMOs are also being asked to improve the internal corporate culture that shapes those brands, reports AdvertisingAge.

The Intersection of Brand and Culture

The news story seems common now. Information about a company – working conditions, political affiliations, government relations, etc. – is made public, and the public’s opinion of the company changes. The change, just like the news, can be detracting or encouraging. Regardless, one thing in clear: in an era of mass information, brand and organizational culture can no longer live in silos.

CMO Briefing No. 10: Are you ready to lead digital disruption?

This CMO Briefing from Egon Zehnder’s Dick Patton and Rory Finlay explores the leadership implications of this year’s Kellogg Summit topic: “Exceeding Market Growth Through Digital Disruption.”

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CMO Briefing No. 9: Desperately seeking digital?

You can find plenty of digital-savvy executives working in smaller, more entrepreneurial companies, but do they have what it takes to lead your big company’s charge into the digital age? To find out, you must look beyond past experience to assess future potential.

CMO Briefing No. 8: Leading the Customer-Centered Organization

On September 25-26, 2013, Egon Zehnder McKinsey & Company and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management jointly hosted the third annual Kellogg Marketing Leadership Summit.

CMO Briefing No. 7: The Big Choice for Marketers

On October 24-25, 2012, Egon Zehnder International, McKinsey & Company and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management jointly hosted the second annual Kellogg Marketing Leadership Summit.

The CMO Is Evolving Into New Species With Vastly Broader Range

Big Data and Digital Demand Expertise in Both New and Traditional Areas of Marketing.

businessweek.com - The Evolution of a New Species of CMO

Evolutionary scientists use the term “cladogenesis” to describe the division of an existing species into two or more new species, often in response to radical change in the environment.

The Evolution of a New Species of CMO

Evolutionary scientists use the term “cladogenesis” to describe the division of an existing species into two or more new species, often in response to radical change in the environment.

Seeking CMOs: Must Know Big Data and Digital Marketing

“The most sought after marketers today are experts in Big Data and Digital Marketing”, writes Bruce Rogers from FORBES.

From Brand Custodian to General Manager – The New Role of the CMO

In the age of digital media where the power of brands of all sizes has been democratized, customer focus has become a strategic imperative for every company.

Architect of Consumer Centricity

Markets are merging; smart, self-confident consumers are networking with one another and sharing their views online. Instead of concentrating on the product, companies looking to exploit these developments need to build their business strategy around what the consumer wants.

The Success Formula for CMOs

This is the first installment in a series of Executive Briefs for Chief Marketing Officers based on recent research conducted by Egon Zehnder involving several hundred senior marketing executives.

Driving Change and Building Value

While many industrial companies in a business-to-business sales environment have identified superior strategic marketing capabilities as a critical long-term success factor, most are unable to achieve the results they’d like from this increasingly important function.

CMO Redefined - Image

CMO Redefined

“Cladogenesis” is a term used by evolutionary scientists to describe the relatively sudden division of an existing species into two or more separate lines – thus creating new species – often in response to radical change in the environment.

CEO Practice Practice Profile

To appoint the right leader for the future, a CEO search must analyze not just an individual’s potential but also the momentum of the company.

C-Suite Perspectives: The CMO

C-Suite executives from five renowned companies – AutoNation, Bloomin’ Brands, Old Navy, Diageo, and BBDO – share their candid insights, key concerns, and best advice for CMOs.

Chief Marketing Officers Practice Profile

Egon Zehnder stays closely attuned to the cutting edge of marketing leadership, and in constant contact with great marketing leaders worldwide.

The Kellogg Marketing Leadership Summit Series

Egon Zehnder is a founding partner of Northwestern University’s Kellogg Marketing Leadership Summit, now in its sixth year.

Today’s CMO is being “Redefined”

Watch Dick Patton and Rory Finlay interview leading Chief Marketing Officers on what marketers need to do to be successful in a rapidly changing marketing landscape.

consultant name

Dick Patton Egon Zehnder, Boston