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“Generating customer loyalty requires that you effectively cope with hard tradeoffs in order to satisfy your most loyal customers all of the time. You will not please all classes of customers once you undertake the challenges of generating loyal customers.“


John Larson is the senior partner at John Larson & Company. Prior to starting his own firm, John held positions at McKinsey & Co., Monitor Company, Lieberman Research Worldwide, and J.D. Power and Associates, specializing in the areas of strategic analysis, organizational effectiveness, and customer satisfaction and loyalty.

John uses survey research techniques to help clients develop a better understanding of the needs of their customers, assess how well these are currently being met in the market place, and then target opportunities to create long term competitive advantage. He has worked with clients to address the specific organizational barriers that can impede effective implementation. These engagements have been conducted across a broad spectrum of different industries, including office products, consumer electronics retailing, industrial chemicals, healthcare, consumer and business banking, medical devices, telecommunications, cable television, retail stock brokerage, pharmaceuticals, truck stops, quick-service restaurants, grocery stores, commercial finance, residential real estate, and hotels.

In addition to speaking at various corporate functions, he has delivered presentations on customer loyalty at Harvard Business School, the University of California at Irvine, Loyola Marymount University and the Conference Board. His articles have appeared in publications such as Business Horizons and Compensation Review. His research and conclusions have been cited in various business periodicals and books, including Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Fortune, the New York Times, The American BankerThe Service Profit Chain, by James Heskett, Earl Sasser and Len Schlesinger, and The Human Equation, by Jeffrey Pfeffer. His work on “The Economics of Customer Satisfaction” appeared in the March–April 1999 issue of Harvard Business Review. In conjunction with Earl Sasser he has published "Building Trust Through Committed Employees" in the fall 2000 issue of Marketing Management. His most recent article on the impact of expectations on customer satisfaction also appeared in Marketing Management.

John’s book The Impact of the AT&T-EEO Consent Decree, written with Professor Herbert R. Northrup of the Wharton School, won an award from the American Library Association for one of the top business books of the year. He holds a M.B.A. with distinction from the Wharton School and an M.A. degree in economic statistics from the University of Wisconsin.

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Susan Brandt

Read the first chapter of Capturing Loyalty

Bennett McClellan is the managing consultant and chief literary officer at John Larson & Company. He is a business strategist, change catalyst, writer and executive coach with over thirty years of experience helping business leaders achieve positive change. In the last decade, Bennett has focused on helping senior executive teams envision and create their futures.

As a former Managing Director of Strategy for Pricewaterhouse-Coopers, Bennett’s past clients include most of the major media and entertainment companies, as well as companies in the social media, high-technology, and fast-moving consumer products arenas. Prior to joining Pricewaterhouse-Coopers Bennett was a consultant in the Los Angeles office of McKinsey & Co., where he worked with clients in the international automotive aftermarket. Bennett has also served in general management positions in the U.S. and abroad.

He earned his Ph.D. in Management from Claremont Graduate University’s Drucker-Ito School of Management. In addition, Bennett received an M.B.A. from Harvard University, where he was a Baker Scholar and editor of the business school newspaper. Bennett holds a B.A. in Biology with a minor in Drama from UC San Diego.

It is with a sad heart that I must report the passing of my respected colleague, Bennett McClellan, on April 4, 2019.  It was my distinct privilege to have known and worked with Bennett since we met at McKinsey & Co. in 1981.  I will miss his quick wit and sharp intellect.

John A. Larson

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