During the 179th episode of “Marketing Today,” I interview Tariq Hassan, chief marketing officer at Petco. Petco is a leading specialty retailer that’s been serving pets and the people who love them for more than 50 years. The company currently has about 1,500 locations throughout North America and employs approximately 26,000 people.

On the show today, Hassan discusses the transformation that is taking place at Petco, the significant investments they are making in nutrition and how all of this impacts their employees, which they call their partners.  

Hassan shares advice for CMOs looking to get on the same page with their CEOs and organizations. “The line of trust around your leadership table is having shared accountability with your partners, and I think if you want to have aligned trust with your CEO, it starts with being aligned with your leadership team.” 

How does Hassan view career risks? “Sometimes, what is a risk on paper, actually presents itself as the biggest opportunity you have going forward.” Also, learn what Hassan believes is vital about brand ethos: “Brand Ethos is really capturing and understanding what that brand purpose is. Then shaping it and bringing it to life in a way that your internal organization knows how to activate. Additionally, you need to be sure your customers know how it is being brought to bear for their benefit.” 

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today”:

  • What kind of pet does Tariq Hassan have? (01:05)
  • How did Tariq Hassan start his career toward Petco? (02:34)
  • What advice would Tariq give to improve relationships with employers? (04:36)
  • What has Tariq’s first year at Petco been like? (06:16) 
  • What gave Tariq business confidence at Petco? (09:46)
  • How does he think about brand ethos? (11:10)
  • What has Tariq had to do with partners (employees) to drive change? (15:05)
  • How does he think about transformation, and have there been any factors that have been critical to success? (17:00)
  • Alan and Tariq discuss the pet market and Petco’s involvement in it. (21:00)
  • How does Tariq think about pet nutrition? (25:03)
  • Is there an experience in Tariq’s life that has defined who he is today? (27:15)
  • What fuels Tariq Hassan to keep going in his career and life? (30:29)
  • Are there brands that Tariq thinks we should pay attention to? (31:37)
  • Where does Tariq Hassan see the future of marketing going? (34:40)

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on opportunities around brand, customer experience, innovation and growth. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine startups.