Are others taking credit for your work? Let’s hope so!

Margaret Franco, VP of IMC at AMD

Marketing is inherently a team sport. Some team members have leading roles. Others play more supportive roles. I was reminded of this last week while having lunch with Margaret Franco, VP of Integrated Marketing Communications at AMD. Margaret is establishing new methods for her team to work with the broader marketing organization in a more collaborative manner to develop and implement integrated communications programs. Her team gets direction from the product marketing and channel marketing groups, then develops and executes the communications plans. Since this is a fairly common scenario in many marketing organizations, I asked her how the new processes were working and got an insightful answer I thought I’d share.

“In a service role, success is measured by how much others take credit for your ideas. We have a team goal, not an individual goal, so let others take the credit,” said Margaret. “This is a good indication that there is a shared sense of ownership and pride in the work.”

This reminded me of the speechwriter who labors away at creating an eloquent address for which the politician receives all the credit. Some people have a difficult time playing this way, especially in tough economic times when job security is a distant memory. Yet, those that find satisfaction in helping others succeed can actually improve their standing by becoming an indispensable and trusted ally.

If you are in a service organization and want to know how well you are doing, look around and see how much your work is being presented by others. It’s an excellent barometer for your success.