Every week, I take a look at a few companies that lapped their profit targets. Leaving Wall Street's pros with quizzical looks on their faces can be a good thing. It usually means that the companies have more in the tank than analysts figured and capital appreciation often follows.

Let's take a look at a few companies that humbled the prognosticators this past week.

We'll start with TiVo (NASDAQ:TIVO). The DVR poster child stunned the market by posting a first-quarter profit of $0.01 per share. Analysts were braced for a $0.02-per-share loss. Moving away from heavily subsidized hardware sales helped guide the company to its first quarterly profit -- finally. Alas, an aggressive marketing campaign will take TiVo back into the red during the current quarter.

Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) was another topper. Sure, the computer maker has problems. Its once-lean direct-selling blueprint feels out of touch with today's demands for instant gratification, and the company lacks the Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) turnaround glow. Dell also announced layoffs this past week.

However, Dell did deliver on the bottom line. The company earned $0.34 a share for the quarter. The market was settling for just $0.26 per share in profitability. With average PC selling prices inching higher, and the company committing itself to cutting costs, believing in Dell feels a whole lot easier now than it did in recent months.

Then we've got Chico's (NYSE:CHS) trying its latest quarter on for size. The apparel retailer saw its fiscal first-quarter earnings dip by a penny to $0.28 a share. Still, that was comfortably ahead of the $0.26-per-share showing Wall Street projected. Sales also clocked in with a healthy 16% advance. Investors may want to wait until the bottom line starts growing again, now that profits have fallen for three consecutive quarters. However, the pros expect flat growth in the current quarter, suggesting that Chico's is inching its way toward a comeback.

Keep watching the companies that lap expectations. Over time, it will be a rewarding experience for investors, as the market rewards the overachievers. That's the kind of surprise we look for in the Rule Breakers newsletter service. Want in? Check out a 30-day trial subscription.

Either way, come back next Monday to learn about more stocks that blew the market away.

TiVo and Dell are Motley Fool Stock Advisor newsletter recommendations. Dell is also an Inside Value stock research service pick. Free 30-day trial subscriptions to either service may help you get an early lead on future market-beaters.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is a fan of toppers. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story, save for TiVo. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.