Grow: How Ideals Power Growth and Profit at the World’s Greatest Companies. Jim Stengel. Crown Business.

Grow: How Ideals Power Growth and Profit at the World's Greatest Companies Book Cover Grow: How Ideals Power Growth and Profit at the World's Greatest Companies
Jim Stengel
Crown Business
December 27, 2011

Based on the unique ten-year growth study involving 50,000 brands, Jim Stengel shows how the world’s fifty best businesses – as diverse as Method, Red Bull, Lindt, Petrobras, Samsung, Discovery Communications, Visa, Zappos, and Innocent – have a cause-and-effect relationship between financial performance and their ability to connect with fundamental human emotions, hopes, values, and greater purposes. In fact, over the 2000s, an investment in these companies – “The Stengel 50” – would have been 400% more profitable than an investment in the S&P 500.

Grow is based on unprecedented empirical research, inspired (when Stengel was global marketing officer of Procter & Gamble) by a study of companies growing faster than P&G. After leaving P&G in 2008, Stengel designed a new study in collaboration with the global research and consulting firm Millward Brown Optimore. This study tracked the connection over a ten-year period between financial performance and customer engagement, loyalty, and advocacy.

Then, in a further investigation of what goes on in the “black box” of the consumer’s mind, Stengel and his team tapped into neuroscience research to look at customer engagement and measure subconscious attitudes to determine whether the top businesses in the Stengel Study were more associated with higher ideals than were others.

Grow thus deftly blends timeless truths about human behavior and values into an action framework – how you discover, build, communicate, deliver, and evaluate your ideals. Through colorful stories drawn from his fascinating personal experiences and “deep dives” that bring out the true reasons for such successes as Pampers, Discovery Channel, Jack Daniel’s, and Zappos, Grow unlocks the code for twenty-first-century business success.

As global marketing officer from 2001 to 2008, Jim Stengel led the effort to leverage higher ideals in brands throughout Procter & Gamble. Since 2008, he has been CEO of the Jim Stengel Company, a think tank and consultancy conducting proprietary research, generating thought leadership, and applying his ideals-driven framework to drive business growth. He is also an adjunct professor at the UCLA Anderson School of Management and serves on the board of directors of Motorola Mobility and AOL. Jim has been published in Harvard Business Review and was recently named to Fortune magazine’s First Executive Dream Team. Jim and his wife, Kathleen, live in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Coronado, California.