Former P&G Global Marketing Officer Jim Stengel on How to Activate Your Purpose

Headshot of Nadine Dietz

Jim Stengel is the President and CEO of The Jim Stengel Group. For those of you who don’t know Jim, he was at Procter & Gamble for 25 years and, right before he retired from P&G as Global Marketing Officer, he led a 7000 person marketing team, managed an advertising budget of $8 Billion+ (that’s right, capital “B” for billion) and won the Advertiser of the Year award at Cannes Lions.  Today, Jim works more hours than he did at P&G, but, as he says, he’s “less tired, more energized and slightly more interesting just because I’m spending nearly 100 percent of my time on things that I absolutely love.”

So what exactly is Jim up to?  Get ready for this, as it’s mind-blowing. First of all, he’s been running his own company, The Jim Stengel Group, to help companies find and activate their purpose. He’s written two books in the last 10 years and about to start his third.  He taught at UCLA for five years and is now at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, where he is an Adjunct.  He does a lot of Executive Education and Program Development.  He advises several small companies, startups, and venture capital firms.  He runs training development programs with partners like Deloitte and Cannes Lions, as well as within companies. And, most important of all, he says, “I’m a husband and a dad, it’s a beautiful life.”

Going into the session with Jim, I thought to myself, “how the heck am I going to get through all my questions in just 30 mins?” I must admit, I didn’t.  But we came really close and there will definitely be a round 2 in the future.  We covered so much ground in here and it is packed so full of great tips and leadership lessons that you must listen in for yourself and be prepared to take lots of notes.  Especially as he lays out the steps on how to define, internalize and activate your purpose. Jim also offers up great advice on how to harness the “power you can have in a horizontal job [CMO] to impact a culture and an enterprise, as well as what he feels will define the CMOs who thrive in the future.

For more reasons why you should be thinking about purpose, check out Jim’s fun and informative video below.  Did you know that “brands who activate their purpose outperform the S&P 500 by 400 percent and grow three times faster than their competition?”  Although that statistic is now 7 or 8 years old, I think we’re seeing plenty of evidence these days of where and why that is true. Nadine Dietz is chief community officer at Adweek and host of the CMO Moves podcast.