June 12, 2012 07:00 ET

Root Helps Petco Build Associate Engagement, Customer Loyalty

SYLVANIA, OH--(Marketwire - Jun 12, 2012) - Root, the strategy execution consulting company, has successfully helped Petco engage company leaders to build customer loyalty and establish market leadership.

As competition in the pet specialty retail market continues to increase, Petco leaders recognize that its own people are the company's best assets and catalysts for change. Over the last five years, the company has worked diligently to engage more than 1,500 store, field and support center leaders in the company's overall business strategy. Petco believes that engaged, well-trained managers create knowledgeable front-line associates, who in turn drive customer engagement and loyalty in a process Petco calls the Engagement Profit Chain. This loyalty is the key to the company's sustained profitability and growth.

The company also linked its business strategy with expected leadership behaviors and practices of its managers in order to deliver results. To achieve its goals, in 2009, the company engaged Root to implement the Root Compass Manager Development Program and called it "Leading at Petco."

Petco leaders improved their teams' connectivity and engagement using three strategic Learning Map® modules developed by Root. These creative and visual tools used icons, infographics, drawings, conceptual illustrations and metaphors to present the Petco strategy in a way that connected each individual's actions to the company's goals, and help create action plans for moving forward. As a result, Petco managers could visualize their roles in the strategy and understand how to connect their efforts to the business in relevant, meaningful ways.

Petco also worked with Root to provide leaders with a program focused on seven key areas of skill-building and development: understanding the business strategy; knowing their specific role in supporting that strategy; connecting their team to the strategy; setting clear expectations; building effective working relationships; coaching and developing; celebrating wins; and continual follow-up.

As a result of these efforts, Petco:

  • Trained more than 1,500 company leaders in small groups;
  • Increased its customer loyalty index by 5 points;
  • Increased manager effectiveness by 2.6%;
  • Raised its associate engagement index by 7 points;
  • Improved associate and leader retention; and
  • Delivered consistently strong performance.

Multimedia Links to Learn More

Learn more about the Root Compass solution:

Watch Root Compass solution videos:

Read the white paper - How Managers Matter to a Cup of Coffee:

Explore the blog:


"Leading at Petco has enabled us to execute, through our people, more consistent understanding and engagement across all 1,100+ stores and support functions," said Charlie Piscitello, Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer for Petco. "Through 'Leading at Petco' we have created a solid foundation of expectations for leaders at all levels of the company -- a critical part of our ability to succeed."

Piscitello says that, at the store level, the impact has been extraordinary: "Immediately after beginning this journey with Root, we saw more confident managers and more engaged associates, and our customer satisfaction metrics have improved markedly across the board. All of these indicators speak for themselves."

"Petco understands that connecting their managers to their business strategy is key to more effective engagement with frontline associates," said Gary Magenta, Senior Vice President for Root. "In turn, those engaged employees more consistently and effectively engage and delight their customers. Leading at Petco has been and continues to be a big win for the company."

ABOUT THE ROOT COMPASS PROGRAM: The Root Compass(SM) Manager Development Program consists of seven modules, combining Root's unique creative and visual methods with best-in-class content. Designed to build the skills of new managers and enhance the effectiveness of seasoned managers, Root Compass focuses on connecting employees to the business strategy through better management.

ABOUT ROOT: Root is the strategic execution company that engages people as the catalyst for change. With more than 20 years of insights from partnering with the world's largest businesses, Root uses a proven strategy execution framework that transforms businesses and accelerates results. A privately-owned company, Root is based in Sylvania, Ohio. For more information, visit

About Petco

Petco is a leading pet specialty retailer that provides the products, services and advice that make it easier for our customers to be great pet parents. Everything we do is guided by our vision for Healthier Pets. Happier People. Better World. We operate more than 1,100 stores nationwide, including more than 30 Unleashed by Petco locations, a smaller format neighborhood shop, and The Petco Foundation, an independent nonprofit organization, has raised more than $90 million since it was created in 1999 to help promote and improve the welfare of companion animals. In conjunction with the Foundation, we work with and support approximately 7,500 local animal welfare groups across the country to help find homes for more than 250,000 animals through in-store adoption events every year.

Root Compass, Learning Map®, Root Learning are either service marks, trademarks or registered trademarks of Root Learning, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. The names of other companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Monica Rohleder
    Phone: 310-822-1096
    Email: Email Contact