About Phyllis EzopPhyllis Ezop is a nationally recognized expert on the Winning Moves that drive consistent and profitable business growth. As a strategic advisor, researcher and marketing information consultant, Ezop blends substantial real world experience with her 20+ year study of business success and failure patterns. She brings her clients a fresh perspective and thought provoking insights. Her company, Ezop and Associates, offers services (such as Winning Moves® Advisory Services, Winning Moves® Sounding Boards, and Winning Moves® Presentations) that help organizations apply her research to accelerate their growth.
With her natural curiosity and love of discovery, she first became intrigued with growth early in her career as an analyst calculating market potential estimates for new lines of business pursued by her corporate employer. She began investigating all sorts of case histories as she set out to determine what makes these kinds of expansion efforts and other growth initiatives succeed. Many years and hundreds of business histories later, she has gone far beyond the numbers and delved deeply into uncovering how business growth really works.
Previously, Ezop held executive positions in various Fortune 500 firms and major corporations (First Federal Savings of Chicago, Allied Van Lines, Quaker Oats, United States Gypsum, Western Electric unit of AT&T). Her corporate career has included market research, forecasting, new product/market management as well as corporate and financial planning. She progressed from entry level statistical modeling and analysis to Director of Marketing Support, where she presented marketing policy recommendations to the Corporate Board of Directors. Beyond Ezop and Associates, her entrepreneurial activities have included ownership interest in a small manufacturing start-up, later sold.
Applying principles emerging from her research to association line assignments with P&L responsibility, she achieved a consistent track record of volume, revenue and profit growth. Her accomplishments here include turnarounds, successful new product introduction, and steady gains for existing product lines, even during industry decline.
Ezop's research finds that companies succeed by making a series of what she calls Winning Moves. These growth propelling Winning Moves are based upon powerful patterns that her research unlocked. The fresh perspective emerging from her research helps companies to pursue the right growth opportunities, as well as to identify which innovations and changes will propel them forward. Ezop's research indicates that the entire process of selecting target markets and identifying market needs warrants rethinking. And, her study of the patterns behind business growth unveils an entirely new framework for approaching, using and interpreting marketing research.
Several years ago, before it became fashionable, she was already finding that the survey-focus group emphasis of traditional market research required rethinking. She wrote her peer reviewed article Database Marketing Research. It was cited by one of the nation's top marketing authorities, the Northwestern University professor known as the world's foremost expert on integrated marketing and branding, in his article calling for change in the market research industry. Ezop's article was also cited in academic books on artificial intelligence and on information technology in research.
Frequently interviewed by the media, Ezop's quotes and comments have been translated into foreign languages and published internationally. She has been quoted in The New York Times, in Investor's Business Daily, in Harvard Management Update, and in various major metropolitan area newspapers. Her views have been published in Business Week several times. She was also quoted in the book The Trader Joe's Adventure: Turning a Unique Approach to Business into a Retail and Cultural Phenomenon.
A thought provoking speaker, Ezop has addressed discriminating audiences such as University of Chicago Graduate School of Business alumni, MIT Enterprise Forum, students at Northwestern University's J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management, and MBA students at the University of Illinois. She also taught university courses in new products, market research, and consumer behavior.
Ezop served several terms on the Board of Directors of the American Marketing Association's Chicago Chapter. Before that, she was a University of Chicago Women's Business Group board member. She has also broadened her background with community involvement in local government: after participating on the village's Comprehensive Long Range Plan Steering Committee, Ezop served a term on the Village of La Grange Park Zoning Board.
Ezop's bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois is in mathematics. She holds an MBA from the University of Chicago.