The most obvious is ‘bunker mentality’.
You know the one. All these horrible missiles are coming over with names like ’shrinking market’, ‘defecting customers’ and ‘falling share price’. So what do you do? You hunker down and hope it will pass.
And you start cutting costs.
All of which brings me to the problem of ‘function leadership’ in business. ‘Function leadership’ is something I quickly detect whenever I’m working with a new client. For whatever reason… historical, force of personality, CEO’s own background… there is usually a favored function within the business. It’s often sales. It’s quite often finance. Sometimes, HR (curiously) has the upper hand.
It’s rarely marketing. And that’s ridiculous.
It’s ridiculous because a business need to be in alignment with its audience. It needs to identify existing and potential market needs and be meeting them. And having met those needs, it needs to be determining the right price and reaching customers with the right promotional activity.
‘That sounds like marketing,’ I hear you say. ‘And that sounds like the penny dropping,’ I reply.
Function leadership should never be in question. Your business needs to be marketing led in good times and in more challenging economic circumstances if it’s to survive.
So back to the bunker and to cost cutting. The marketing budget is usually first in the cross-hairs in any cost reduction exercise. The very budget that, given what I’ve said earlier, should be protected at all costs (pardon the pun)!
to CEOs and MDs everywhere. Make sure your business
is marketing led at all times. And if you need to cut costs,
don’t go for the soft option.
Tags: alignment bunker mentality business function business need ceos corporate confidence cross hairs different ways economic circumstances good times leadership in business marketing budget missiles potential market promotional activity pun recessionary times reply function share price soft option