A recent BusinessWeek article discusses “The Disposable Worker”. It does a great job describing the challenges facing today’s workforce. But for the biggest brands, it shows a growing and necessary trend. How do I compete on a global scale deploying talent on an as needed basis, increasing my flexibility and decreasing my cost? Ultimately how does this trend impact how marketing is done inside the enterprise?
Marketing departments are required to provide ever increasing ROI with fewer resources and less budget. This is difficult to do when you have a large headcount filled with too many generalists. The marketplace is changing so rapidly it is impossible to keep the perfect balance of skills on your team. CMOs are increasingly turning to interim marketing executives to; build an analytics function, launch a new product / brand or handle merger integration.
Reality is your headcount is lower than it has been in years leaving your team overworked. Your internal team does not have the skills or bandwidth to handle a large influx of work and move from execution to strategy. Outsourcing to an agency or consulting firm is too expensive and your results are limited by the talent they have on their team / bench. Alternatively for significantly less money, you can have an interim executive who has direct industry experience working by your side on a daily basis.
In the end you get much more than just a recommendation you would receive from a consulting process. You get a recommendation from someone who knows what it is like to live in an enterprise like yours, so the recommendation is one that can be implemented and then they stay around for as much of the actual implementation as you see fit.