Robert Apatoff is the Executive Director of the Northwestern/Kellogg Executive Leadership Institute (KELI) and Clinical Professor. Rob is also a Senior Advisor for the Texas Pacific Group (TPG). Rob has more than 30 years of experience in executive management, strategy, ecommerce and consumer marketing. He has leadership experience in diverse industries that include consumer packaged goods, beverage, athletic shoes & apparel, healthcare, personal lines insurance, as well as floral and gifting. After over eight years leading FTD Companies worldwide, Rob retired as President and CEO at the end of 2016. At FTD, he engineered the 2014 acquisition of Provide Commerce from Liberty Interactive, creating the preeminent global floral and gifting company. The acquisition doubled company revenue while continuing to grow FTD's industry-leading profitability. Throughout his career, Rob has a consistent history of helping to lead companies through tough, competitive markets including executive marketing roles while at Anheuser-Busch, Reebok, and as the first CMO at Allstate. Prior to FTD, Rob served as President and CEO of Rand McNally & Company, after being recruited by PE leader, Leonard Green and Partners and successfully led a turn-around and subsequent sale, by modernizing the RM&C product portfolio and growing the company through new digital, mass merchant and education initiatives. Rob has served on several public and private Boards including FTD Companies, Rand McNally, Inc., Club Champion and Intercontinental Art. He has also served on the Board of Trustees of the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, SIFE (Students in Free Enterprise), the Board of Visitors for DePauw University and is a member of the Chicago Commercial Club.
**This course was formerly known as MKTG-940-0**
This course, covered in three modules, deals with a wide variety of subjects that are a top priority for CMOs, CEOs and Boards of Directors.
Understanding the Boardroom
- Roles and Responsibilities of the Board
- Developing Marketing Dashboards for Boards
- Aligning Marketing Strategy with Board Interests
- Activists in the Boardroom
CEO Special Interest: Marketing Issues
- Keeping Brands Relevant
- Pricing and Managing Cannibalization
- Challenges in Industries Undergoing Major Transformation (Healthcare and Airlines)
- Managing Start-ups
Diverse Roles and Challenges of a CEO
- Managing change
- Ethical dilemmas
- Negotiation skills
- Conflict management
This course deals with several discrete topics holistically with emphasis on the practical realities in the C-Suite and the Boardroom. It is a particularly useful platform of learning for students who wish to understand the "real world" implications of being a CMO/CEO. Unlike most classes, the subjects are non-linear and do not necessarily build on each other.
There will be a number of guest speakers. Past speakers have included: Mary Dillon, CEO of US Cellular and former CMO of McDonald's; Joe Ricketts, founder of Ameritrade and owner of the Chicago Cubs; Joe Tripodi, CMO of Coca Cola; Rick Lenny, retired CEO of Hershey Brands, and Dean Harrison, CEO of Northwestern Memorial Healthcare.
This course is required for the six-course major in marketing management; but not for the four-course marketing major. It is tied in with the Advanced Topics in Marketing course taught by Professor Calder (MKTG-922); marketing problems of high-level strategic relevance raised by guest speakers and the instructor in this course could become projects for student groups to investigate in more detail in MKTG-922.
Students who are not officially enrolled in the course (auditors) are strictly prohibited.