Press release

Bain & Company and NPS creator, Fred Reichheld, reveal the unbeatable strategy of loving customers in Reichheld’s most provocative book yet

Bain & Company and NPS creator, Fred Reichheld, reveal the unbeatable strategy of loving customers in Reichheld’s most provocative book yet

Bain & Company partners Maureen Burns and Darci Darnell join Fred Reichheld, the creator of the Net Promoter Score, in launching their new book, Winning on Purpose

  • December 07, 2021
  • min read

Press release

Bain & Company and NPS creator, Fred Reichheld, reveal the unbeatable strategy of loving customers in Reichheld’s most provocative book yet

BOSTON—December 7, 2021—Winning companies—those that truly make the world a better place, deliver 2-3 times the average stock market returns and offer fulfilling work for their employees—often have one thing in common: they put their customers first, ahead of all other stakeholders. Many of these top companies are adept practitioners of Bain & Company’s widely used Net Promoter Score ℠ (NPS), a metric for tracking customer loyalty, which is grounded in the recognizable truth that if a company treats you right, you come back—and you tell your friends and family.

Bain & Company announced today the launch of Winning on Purpose: The Unbeatable Strategy of Loving Customers (HBR Press, December 2021) by Darci Darnell, Maureen Burns and Fred Reichheld, creator of the Net Promoter System℠. This new book provides extensive and convincing evidence that customer capitalism allows all stakeholders to win while building a sustainable future.

In Winning on Purpose, the authors detail why businesses should make enriching the lives of customers their primary purpose, irrefutably proving that this is the best way of ensuring sustainable growth, happily fulfilled employees and robust investor returns. The book also unveils two of Bain’s new innovations: Net Promoter 3.0, which has been updated to meet today’s current business and social environment, and Earned Growth, an accounting-based twin for NPS.

“Dissatisfaction is surging against traditional capitalism,” said Fred Reichheld, Bain & Company fellow and creator of the Net Promoter System℠. “It has become critical for businesses to move away from financial capitalism, which is focused primarily on profits, and stakeholder capitalism, which ultimately doesn’t satisfy anyone, to customer capitalism, which makes enriching the lives of customers a top priority. That’s proven to be the best way to ensure robust, sustainable results for all stakeholders. NPS shines as a guide star for leaders committed to making their companies truly great.”

With an entertaining and inspiring mix of personal stories, customer and employee experiences along with CEO and investor insights, the authors share: 

  • How NPS feedback from millions of customers has revealed that the previously invisible forces of love and loyalty drive business success—and how traditional financial metrics orient companies toward greed and self-interest. NPS illuminates which companies are on the path to greatness and can sustainably provide the best experiences for customers, the most rewarding jobs for employees and the highest returns for investors.
  • Why most NPS practitioners achieve just a small fraction of the system’s potential, and how leading practitioners use it as a moral compass to ensure people are treated right. Companies and case studies cover a range of sizes and industries, from T-Mobile, Apple and Amazon to Vanguard, Discover, USAA and FirstService, and digital revolutionaries such as Airbnb, Warby Parker, Tesla and Peloton
  • The Revolutionary Earned Growth Rate (EGR), which provides the accounting twin to complement NPS, ensuring firms earn “good profits”—generated when loyal consumers come back for more and bring their friends—and why EGR should be included in audited financial statements. This is critical not only for customers, boards and investors, but also for employees to make informed decisions about where to work.
  • How to fight the Great Resignation by empowering employees to serve customers and hear how they did. The best companies know that the human touch is a key competitive differentiator for customer satisfaction and retention. And that for employees, the freedom to serve customers with empathy and creativity is the best path to extraordinary teams.
  • The F.R.E.D. Stock Index (FREDSI), which tracks total shareholder return (TSR) for companies that achieve their industry’s highest NPS. Not only are these companies customer-love winners; they consistently beat the stock market, with annual returns of more than 26%--almost triple the stock market average over the past decade.

FRED REICHHELD is the creator of the Net Promoter System, the founder of Bain & Company’s Loyalty practice, and the author of five books including the New York Times bestseller “The Ultimate Question 2.0.” He is currently a fellow and senior advisory partner at Bain, where he has worked since 1977.

DARCI DARNELL is the global head of Bain & Company’s Customer practice, responsible for the firm’s client solutions in customer strategy, loyalty, commercial excellence, pricing, and marketing. Darci has served in multiple global leadership roles and today sits on the firm’s top-elected governance committee.

MAUREEN BURNS is a senior partner in Bain & Company’s Customer practice. She is one of Bain’s foremost experts on the Net Promoter System and Customer Loyalty. Maureen has led some of Bain’s most notable digital transformations, helping her clients harness technology and data to earn Customer Loyalty.

Editor's Note: To arrange an interview, contact Katie Ware at or +1 646 562 8107.

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About Bain & Company

Bain & Company is a global consultancy that helps the world’s most ambitious change makers define the future.

Across 65 cities in 40 countries, we work alongside our clients as one team with a shared ambition to achieve extraordinary results, outperform the competition, and redefine industries. We complement our tailored, integrated expertise with a vibrant ecosystem of digital innovators to deliver better, faster, and more enduring outcomes. Our 10-year commitment to invest more than $1 billion in pro bono services brings our talent, expertise, and insight to organizations tackling today’s urgent challenges in education, racial equity, social justice, economic development, and the environment. We earned a platinum rating from EcoVadis, the leading platform for environmental, social, and ethical performance ratings for global supply chains, putting us in the top 1% of all companies. Since our founding in 1973, we have measured our success by the success of our clients, and we proudly maintain the highest level of client advocacy in the industry. 

Net Promoter®, NPS®, NPS Prism®, and the NPS-related emoticons are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Inc., NICE Systems, Inc., and Fred Reichheld. Net Promoter Score℠ and Net Promoter System℠ are service marks of Bain & Company, Inc., NICE Systems, Inc., and Fred Reichheld.