Dr. Robert (Bob) Zirlin, Managing Director of AriVance Business Growth Consulting, LLC has helped businesses of all sizes over a 30-year career exceed their expectations for profitable growth.  With expertise in business-to-business and business-to-government markets, Dr. Zirlin’s assignments have spanned a wide range of industries, including: manufacturing, industrial, financial services, automotive, construction, plastics, commercial vehicle, water, energy, utilities, environmental, and technology.

Committed to transforming small and mid-sized businesses utilizing innovation and growth processes which have made large firms successful, Dr. Zirlin leverages a wealth of executive experience with Fortune 500 corporations as well as smaller, privately-held companies.  He understands the impediments to growth in both large and small organizations, summed up in the polar extremes of vision without action and action without vision.

Dr. Zirlin’s own career began with a heavy dose of vision.  After graduating with a BA from Lafayette College, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, he completed a PhD in Philosophy at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.  While teaching college for two years during this period, he concluded that an occupation focused on “big picture thinking” without action would be unsatisfying.  This led to an MBA in Marketing and Finance from Columbia University and three decades of business accomplishments, including:

  • Held leadership roles for 18 years with Rockwell International, a $12 billion Fortune 500 industrial goods corporation focused on commercializing advanced technology in diverse industries.  These roles culminated in the position of Director of Product Planning and Development at ArvinMeritor, Rockwell's successor business in the automotive and truck component markets.
  • Completed executive assignments in the Clean Technology arena, focusing on the water, energy, and environmental industries.  Dr. Zirlin served as Vice President of Sales and Marketing for WasteZero, a growing leader in environmental services, applauded by the EPA and prominent economists for highly effective municipal programs that reduce solid waste and increase recycling. 
  • Led the product management and marketing organizations of Insituform Technologies, a global $845 million NASDAQ firm, specializing in construction products and services for water and energy pipeline rehabilitation, and the originator of cured-in-place pipe trenchless technology. 
  • Featured in national business journals, including publication of a seminal article in the field of consumer esthetics, an emerging branch of market research.  Interviewed in the April 1, 2008 issue of Marketing News: "B-to-B Marketer Knows How to Fill the Pipeline." 
  • Held leadership positions with the American Marketing Association.  As Board Member and Director of Professional Development for the Detroit Chapter, created and led a long-running and highly successful Mentoring Program. 
  • Advised cities on raising public awareness of the need for infrastructure renewal through participation on Water Environment Federation (WEF) "Water is Life" Subcommittee and roll out of PBS documentary, "Liquid Assets."  Speaker and panelist on WEF webcast, "Engineering an Infrastructure Education Program."

"Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare."

- Japanese Proverb