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The Myth of Excellence


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About the Author

FRED CRAWFORD is executive vice president and global sector leader of Cap Gemini Ernst & Young's consumer products, retail, and distribution consulting practice. From his base in New York City he travels the globe working with senior executives on how to reach today's elusive consumer.

RYAN MATHEWS is a principal at FirstMatter LLC, a leading futurist firm that works with companies such as Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Grey Advertising, General Motors, Georgia-Pacific, and Coca-Cola to anticipate the trends shaping corporate America, global business, and e-commerce.


"Fred Crawford and Ryan Mathews are exceptional strategic thinkers who have given anyone concerned about customers a practical, innovative, and unique approach to competitive differentiation."--Frederick W. Smith, Chairman, President, and CEO, Federal Express

"At Procter & Gamble, we believe the consumer is boss. The Consumer Relevancy model described in The Myth of Excellence is the best tool I've seen for incorporating consumer wants and needs into your business."--A. G. Lafley, President and CEO, The Procter & Gamble Company "Tired of business drivel? If you are ready to step beyond platitudinous mission statements and strategies cooked up in distant boardrooms that have no connection to the trenches where business battles are actually being fought, this is the book for you. It is grounded, readable, and honest -- just like your business should be."
-- Paco Underhill, author of Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping "The Myth of Excellence stands apart from the deluge of business books on the market with its candor and readability. For the brand-marketing executive, the book provides some especially revealing insights into underlying consumer values. Even more refreshing is the authors' approach to imparting business lessons through real research and first-hand case studies."
-- C. Manly Molpus, president and chief executive officer, The Grocery Manufacturers of America "Everyone in business thinks they really know their customers and what they want. But, in The Myth of Excellence, Fred Crawford and Ryan Mathews have given me new and useful insights into the startling changes taking place before our very eyes. When they tell us, for example, that 'human values are the contemporary currency of commerce, ' they are not just offering another new business platitude but rather a new lens through which to view the consumer -- a lens very few people understand. The Myth of Excellence is both a big idea and a blueprint for action. A true must-read."
-- Michael Burandt, president, North American Consumer Products, Georgia-Pacific Corporation "Today's customers are leading a revolution against business as usual: They are demanding that companies recognize them as individuals and conduct business on their terms. In The Myth of Excellence, Crawford and Mathews provide proven strategies for meeting the demands of today's empowered customers, who are crying out to be treated with respect, dignity, and courtesy."
-- Thomas M. Siebel, chairman and chief executive officer, Siebel Systems, Inc.

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