During the past year I’ve had the good fortune of interviewing several inspiring marketing leaders for Forbes’ CMO Network as well as sharing insights from my book, The CMO Manifesto, with hundreds of marketers across the country. A common theme from all these conversations is that there has never been a more dynamic, complex and exciting time to be a marketing professional than now. Things are changing at an accelerating rate. The choices of how to engage with customers along the evolving decision journey are increasingly complex. And the voice of the customer in sharing their experiences has never been louder.
To be successful in this environment I believe every marketer should begin this year by resolving to disrupt the status quo and become an agent for positive change for their organizations. This will take courage — to break down departmental silos, to engage with true authenticity and to realign resources to better match how customers are using communications channels. It will also take perseverance. Positive change doesn’t come easily or overnight, but the payoff can be huge. And it will take allies. Transforming a department, a marketing organization or an entire company can’t be done alone. Find other like-minded team members who also believe that now is the time to embrace the changes your customers demand. Use the voice of those customers to unify your team’s focus. Identify your BHAGs (big hairy audacious goals) and plot your course for early wins. Celebrate your successes to reinforce that change can be good.
Take this annual opportunity to reflect on what you want to do differently in the new year and become the catalyst for positive change that your organization needs. Best of luck in 2014!