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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
“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.