Professional summary

Rick Barrera is a nationally acclaimed speaker, marketing consultant and author, known throughout the Fortune 500 for his extraordinary speaking ability and his unique approach to brand building. His research on the strategies used by breakthrough brands like Apple, American Girl, Minute Clinic, Lexus, Google, Starbucks and ZipCar will change your thinking about marketing forever.

Rick has helped hundreds of companies re-design their systems and implement a holistic approach to serving customers.

In his newest bestselling book, Overpromise and Overdeliver: How to Design and Deliver Extraordinary Customer Experiences, Barrera illustrates how an increasing number of cutting-edge firms are building breakthrough brands in record time.


Engagement overview

Duration and cost of an engagement depends on the scope of work, identified during the initial consultation.


Rick's client list includes

• Abbott Labs
• Ameriprise
• AutoCrib
• AutoZone
• Bayer
• Caterpillar
• Intel
• Husqvarna
• Merrill Lynch
• Verizon


Ask these simple questions of the "Crisis Team."

1. "Do you believe our customers would prefer that we consistently plan and put processes into place to prevent crises, or do you think they would prefer that we jump from one crisis to another to serve their needs? Would they continue to do business with us if they knew how we operated on a daily basis?"
2. "Do you believe that our investors (cur... Read more

You only have ONE customer, the end-user. Where do your channel partners get the money they pay you? From the END USER! Focusing on ANY other person in the organization or supply chain and calling them customers will cause you to make many errors in research, design and spending.

Your channel partners are partners only if they work WITH you to add additional value to the END USER. Otherwise, the... Read more

There are many ways to drive the change, but first you need to be sure they understand why it is in their best interest to move to something new. Changing personal habits can be hard but most are willing if they clearly understand the benefits.

As for how to drive adoption, there are two methods I have found particularly effective. One is to drive it layer by layer from the top which is called ... Read more

Culture is the sum of the behaviors driven by the UNWRITTEN RULES. The first step is to get these ambassadors together to make the unwritten rules written. That is, what they are teaching in their stories, mantras and history lessons must be CORE to the company in both past and present contexts. By making the implicit explicit, you'll discover where those conflicts are and what is truly CORE.

... Read more

In a way, you are reaping what you have sown. By offering the lowest prices in the marketplace, you attracted the least loyal customers...those who are price sensitive rather than loyal to your unique and differentiated offer based on something other than price. The big guys can and will crush you because they have deeper pockets and can easily outlast you.

Trying to win back customers based o... Read more


I always like to break a long project into a series of projects each with a specific goal, metric and deadline. As you complete each phase, you can celebrate your accomplishments and then declare a short "rest" period before embarking on the next phase. You want to keep the phases shorter rather than longer because you'll maintain more momentum. You can also break the entire project into say 3 lar... Read more

The focus should always be on resolving the customer's issue to their satisfaction (or delight) in alignment with the brand you are representing in the shortest time possible. You should not be rewarding speed but rather true customer resolution (which may have multiple definitions depending on the issue and the brand). One call resolution should be a goal whenever possible. Personalizing the call... Read more

You need to be ACTING immediately if you are losing real talent. If these people are mission critical and the reason you acquired the firm, you need to speak with them one-on-one today and do whatever it takes to keep least for a year or two until you can stabilize the situation. If they are just nice-to-have talent and you acquired the firm for technology, IP or other assets, then you ... Read more

I believe you need to "behave like a start-up" meaning that you need to start with "The Senior Team" whoever that is (new owners and whomever is core leadership) working with a cross-section of the personnel to create a new set of values for the new firm followed by an inspiring long term vision, clear short-term mission (2 years or less). Next you'll need a clear articulation of what makes your c... Read more

You will want to immediately read "Profit from the Core" by Chris Zook along with the sequels "Beyond the Core" and "unstoppable." I have facilitated many such discussions and the biggest issue you likely face is the lack of proper research PRIOR to the strategic planning meeting. That meeting should be the culmination of the process, rather than the beginning. Meeting in the absence of quality in... Read more

Respectfully, I believe you are asking the wrong questions and likely using the wrong metrics. You need to step way back and look at the entire customer experience holistically. My guess is that your product "design" is not keenly tuned to the real needs and expectations of your customers. You also need to re-examine the role of customer service, given the lifetime value of your customers and the ... Read more

Yes. Stop focusing on online reviews and instead focus on the critical elements of your customer's experience. Also, stop asking generic questions like "How was everything?" the answer to which will almost always be "fine." Fine really means "Not exceptional... there are probably a few things I am not happy with but I don't want to ruin my evening by talking about them. I am here with friends or f... Read more

1. I make a very clear distinction in my book - Overpromise and Overdeliver: Designing and Delivering Extraordinary Customer Experiences that promising something you CANNOT deliver is LYING. Lying destroys customer trust and company value. Overpromising is promising something unique that only you can deliver.

2. There needs to be a clear "Scope of Work" or similar doc... Read more


Rick was on target, knew his audience and kept them engaged the whole time--especially when he hit on realities that were close to home. It's a great speaker who can make an audience look at themselves and start the wheels of change spinning, even when the change would be uncomfortable.

Sandra Carroll, Manager Travel Communications AAA

Outstanding way of delivering a customized presentation and capturing our Producers!

Yvonne Garcia, Senior Business Development Consultant Signator Financial Network

You did a dynamic job for us. You really exceeded our expectations and WOWed our channel. Thank you for the research you did to make it personal for our audience and continue the conference message. It made all the difference!

Tammra Borrall, Senior Manager for Consultant Programs Intuit

I feel like Rick's become our partner over the years. He's been studying our company for four years. There's nobody that I know that works with us on these presentations that has done the preparation that Rick has done. He knows our culture so well. It seems like he's the one guy who can take the message we're trying to deliver and tailor it to our audience.

Tim Vargo, President and COO AutoZone

Rick's presentation exceeded our expectations. The most valuable point he taught the audience was to work on their time and purpose of their meeting on year out and to ensure that the message/theme is presented at each touch point. He did a great job of reinforcing his message throughout the presentation.

Amy Castaldi Convention Industry Council

I have sat through dozens of presentations over the past 30 years and Rick was one of the most refreshing and informative presenters I have ever listened to. He gave you a lot of take away to help you improve your business.

Paul Harris Notifier

Never have I seen a speaker who knows his audience more. Unbelievable... I would recommend Rick in a heartbeat.

Brad Tolstedt Wells Fargo

We actually had Rick Barrera at an OFDA conference last year. Rick was the last speaker of the event. People actually missed their plane to see his entire presentation. Rick does a great job, engages the audience. The Overpromise/Overdeliver is right on the mark.

Jim McGarra OFDA & NOPA

You took the entire group right to the edge and inspired them to action... they loved you.

R. Scott Anderson Thrifty Car Rental

Rick really opened my eyes. He knew more about my business than I did.

Jason Schulz, Lexus