Remembering Ed Artzt
Published April 12, 2023 by Nina Pearl in
Edwin L. Artzt, Procter & Gamble’s former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, passed away on Thursday, April 6, 2023.
Ed joined P&G in advertising in 1953 and quickly made a mark on the brands in his care. His first success was Comet, a fledgling household cleanser that became the market leader; he then worked on Zest, Charmin, Bounty, and Folgers. He transformed P&G’s advertising capability as the head of Copy Services and step-changed brand promotion while there.
Soon after, as Manager of Advertising for P&G’s struggling Paper business, Ed combined the superior technology of the new CPF process paper with ‘first-in-the-industry’ transparent poly packaging. This, along with the compelling advertising copy of Mr. Whipple, resulted in Charmin quickly growing to national category leadership.
As early as 1975, while leading P&G’s European operations, Ed made growing the international businesses of the Company a top priority. This would culminate during Ed’s tenure as our CEO, as he made the globalization of P&G his priority, expanding into the world’s fastest-growing markets and creating scale by globalizing the planning, internal structure, communications and execution of new business activities.
Ed spent considerable time throughout his career developing employees. One of his most enduring contributions is the creation of P&G College, the predecessor of our current training programs, which became the cornerstone of our worldwide training efforts. He was also a courageous advocate for diversity, measuring and rewarding management for leveraging the unique backgrounds and experiences of employees to create new advantages as we became a global company.
Current Chief Executive Officer, Jon Moeller, reflected on the influence Ed Artzt had on the Company, “Ed had the foresight and competitive spirit to position P&G for success, and he led with conviction and courage.”
Procter & Gamble
In the conference center at P&G headquarters that bears his name, there is a quote from Ed Artzt.
“This is not a company of ordinary individuals. It’s an organization of high energy, creative, articulate people who like to set higher standards for themselves than anyone else can set for them.”
When I meet younger alumni and even employees who did get to know the man, I remind them of these words. I think it says a great deal about a company when its leaders credit success to their people. I think it also says a great deal about such a leader.
Ed Tazzia, Chairman
P&G Alumni Network