I have never liked referring to people as a “resource,” or as an “asset” in the impersonal sense. Even with people reporting in to me, doing that always seemed to trivialize the individuals being referred to and just never has sat well with me. At the same time, I’ve seen how personnel-related “investments,” such as training or process improvements, can drive bottom-line impacting productivity gains. So, it’s hard to deny that employees are in fact resources, or assets to the organization.
Add to that idea the fact that personnel-related expenses are often the biggest category in the budget, it follows that finding and hiring the right employees is one of the most important functions of today’s business leaders. One such leader is marketing executive Adele Sweetwood, Vice President of Marketing at SAS.
Adele’s work in leading the evolution of data-driven marketing at SAS by using our own analytic marketing solutions has been described in the whitepaper by Argyle Executive Forum, titled Building a Marketing Analytics Culture. More recently, her views on finding and hiring marketers were published in the HBR.org blogs in a post titled, How to Find, Assess, and Hire the Modern Marketer.
In that post, she describes the “modern marketer” and the need to be proficient in a full range of analytics that cover the broad range of today’s marketing activities, including planning, engaging and optimizing customer relationships across a variety of channels.
Those proficiencies are understandable, given the radical change happening in marketing driven by big data and empowered customers. But analytic proficiencies are not enough. What’s equally important is for marketer to remain attuned to the creative side of marketing and the time-tested practices from traditional marketing.
In her post, Adele gets into specifics about how to hire modern marketers, and her view that a modern marketer should have a “marketing analytics portfolio” that demonstrates the use of data in the planning and implementation of marketing initiatives. And as she put it, modern marketers should be able to:
Explain the what, how, and why, or why not of a marketing initiative.
For her, a modern marketer is both creative and rational, and also inquisitive, inventive and enthused by a culture that is both advanced and agile.
It’s worth your time to read her HBR post for full details on how to assemble a portfolio of modern marketing assets through the hiring process. Let me know what you think. And as always, thanks for following!