Phil Terry

Founder and CEO

Phil Terry

Phil Terry, Founder and CEO of Collaborative Gain, Inc., founded the Councils in 2002 with a fellow group of Internet pioneers including Elizabeth Peaslee, then at Travelocity, Marissa Mayer, then at Google, Maryam Mohit, then at Amazon, Mary Baumgartner, then at HBO Online, Jake Peters, then at Uline, Mark Carpenter, then at AARP, and a few others. Phil also co-authored Customers Included, the book widely praised by CEOs, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs for its practical and passionate focus on building better businesses and has written for the Harvard Business Review and other publications.

With the Councils, Phil, the Collaborative Gain team, and many founding members, have together developed a community for hundreds of senior leaders to help each other run better, more customer-inclusive companies.

Member companies range from Apple to @walmartlabs, from Bank of America to Wells Fargo, from startups like Hotel Tonight, to industry leaders like TripAdvisor. See a list of participating companies here (and see the testimonials members give on the experience). Phil and his extended team run numerous councils including Product Councils, General Management Councils, CEO Councils, Strategy Councils and others.

Phil has also written about the power of asking for help as a key leadership discipline in the Harvard Business Review and talked about it in his TEDx talk. His passion for asking for help is why he started the Councils (that and his passion for customer experience).

In 2014, after 15 years as CEO of Creative Good, a consulting firm, Phil sold that business so he could focus full-time on the Councils and realize the mission his recently deceased mother embodied—help others connect and ask for help.

Speaker Bio

Phil has given hundreds of keynotes and featured talks at events like the Harvard Business School Distinguished Speaker Series, National Retail Federation conferences, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, and for private corporations such as Apple, American Express, eBay, Fidelity, Google, Intuit, Walmart, and many others. See a list of companies and conferences where he’s spoken here (and some testimonials and a 3 minute video about his talk).

He’s been profiled and quoted extensively in publications like the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times and named by Fast Company as one of the Fast Company 100 – 100 leaders shaping the 21st century.

Phil sits on the advisory board of the Harvard Business School Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, the University of Southern California’s Engineering School’s Innovation Institute and the high-growth startup, Stella Service.

Phil is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School, where he was also awarded the Dean’s Award. Phil began his career at Moody’s Investors Service, Internet startup PlanetAll (later sold to Amazon) and McKinsey & Co.

In his spare time he founded and runs two innovative nonprofits that are changing the customer experience for art and literature – Slow Art Day and Reading Odyssey. He lives with his wife in Brooklyn.

Get in Touch

Schedule a 15 minute conversation to see if bringing Phil in to speak could help you and your company include the customer.