Think of a recent content project managed by a member of the marketing team. Chances are, the manager functioned as a Directly Responsible Individual (DRI) with accountability for the project. She most likely assembled a team of resources from inside and outside the organization.
These types of flexible work styles have prompted marketing leaders to ask how they should structure the marketing organization. Around a product? A brand? Existing structure? “Pick one,” suggested Chris Ross, research director, Gartner for Marketing Leaders, at the Gartner Digital Marketing Conference 2016.
The answer, he said, is around capability. “Do I have the right capability to support the needs of the business? And can I zig and zag as the needs of business change?”
Building the marketing organization for the next decade will require careful selection from a range of external partners balanced against the existing skills and talent in the marketing organization.
Nurture internal talent
To keep pace with the rate of change in digital marketing practices, marketing leaders should nurture their in-house talent to foster skills around areas such as marketing technology, multichannel marketing and business IQ. They should also pay attention to the explicit skills of leadership and collaboration.
Remember amazing teams don’t just happen. They don’t just fall off the org chart.
“Often there is an assumption that bright talented people know how to lead and collaborate,” Mr. Ross said. Yet while they may have domain expertise they might not be as strong in these areas. “Be aware of developing these skills in your team,” he said.
Also, be aware of the growing trend of the “Fat T Marketer.” The traditional T-shaped marketer holds breadth and depth of experience in a core area. Mr. Ross noted the emergence of the Fat T Marketer as someone with a deeper level of expertise in more areas. “This doesn’t mean specialists go away, but this is increasingly the profile of a marketer,” he said. “It allows them to be more interchangeable and flexible.”