Most Marketable Skill

23 05 2014

ownershipI do a lot of interviews, on average at least 2 a week. Sometimes for an open role, but often just looking for talent we may need one day in the future and sometimes to see what exciting things other marketers are doing! I was recently asked what I consider to be the most valuable marketable skill. What is it that I think is essential for success in today’s job market? The skill that I feel is the most important, and why it’s so indispensable for people going into the workforce. To me that skills is:


You have take ownership. I know it may not be perceived as a skill, but basically I think ownership means:

  • You go beyond your job description, shed light on the gray areas, and help the team reach the goal.
  • You go the extra mile for customers and colleagues.
  • You have passion for what you do, and make sure you are always learning and listening for new ways to improve.
  • You always spend money (or allocate budget/expenses) as if the money was yours. If you owned the company would you spend the money on this activity?
  • It’s about taking pride in your work!

If you feel like you can’t own the project or job then find something else, because your lack of interest will show up in the way you walk between meetings, they way you discuss challenges with your colleagues and ultimately in the results!

It’s telling that in a business context you can always tell instantly when the owner is in the conversation. One of my lecturers at University (a long time ago) once told a story that has always stuck with me.  She once ran her own restaurant and she felt none of her staff wiped down a table the same way she did, and that it essentially came down to the fact that she ‘owned’ the table, she viewed it as hers, and as a result, she wiped it cleaner and showed that extra level of care and passion for doing even these simple tasks. It shows!

Choosing one word is always difficult. I could have easily gone with leadership, initiative, grace, passion, sharing, learning, resilience or any other number of skills which I also think are important. But ultimately I think taking ownership of your role, project, team or development embodies all these things. It also makes you more valuable to a team!

The Good, the bad, and the ugly of marketing conferences

7 05 2014

Marketing companionI came across this great Marketing Companion Podcast (Link to podcast) with Tom Webster and Mark W Shaefer a while ago, but have only just got around to sharing!

Apart from being a great marketing podcast and blog, this particular session is unique for conference marketers. It’s essentially first hand customer  insight into attending, sponsoring, and speaking at marketing conferences by a couple of marketing guys I follow (it’s basically an interesting customer insight in my opinion).

I think it gives some real insight into our customers and highlights some universal truths, in case you don’t have time here’s my take aways:

  • High level executives only go to conferences because they were invited to speak?
  • Attendees want to be inspired, made to think.
  • Pay to play (or sponsored) conferences are ok, but only if there is a beating heart behind it, someone curating the speaker content, vetting their material, coaching the speakers!
  • Big room / Small interactions – even at the biggest industry events true value comes from spending time with speakers and those tiny interactions that happen around the formal sessions.
  • Having smaller consultants (or solution providers) who can’t sponsor but have real cutting edge research can be a win win!
  • Scholarships can help change the perception of the event

Hope you find it interesting…you can also download it at itunes.