Any change at the top of an organization impacts the group and the company as a whole. The trend on rapid change has affected the marketing group faster than other groups. Spencer Stuart has done some research# about higher CMO turnover in 2018.
A few of the key takeaways resonate with conversations I've had with peers:
- Poor alignment between the CEO and CMO on the mission (and the timeline) of the marketing organization’s output.
- Too little time spent defining clear priorities for the CMO, which can lead to flawed or incomplete assessment criteria, as CMOs’ roles vary depending on the industry.
- Mismatch between the talent and the needed skills around the corner. The opportunities and challenges CMOs have historically been dealing with are not necessarily the same ones they will face in the future.
These seem to apply across industries as well.
As all senior leaders, marketers have two imperatives — develop value and communicate value. This means focusing on internal as much as external audiences and outcomes, connecting marketing to the business strategy, and building credibility with consistent results.
In addition to domain competence, all professional knowledge workers should constantly evolve a set of skills that include:
- communication — the ability to craft a compelling narrative
- continuous learning — a commitment to updating domain skills, but also to understand the nature of change and technology and its impact on human behavior
- leadership — it's a tired term, but the idea of inspiring and building a team of continuous learners is still useful
As I look at the chart above, I cannot help but think that there might be a changing of the guard as well. Curious as to your reactions.