I, Change-maker

Driving change successfully isn’t just about shaping, selling and executing a compelling vision for a better tomorrow. It’s also about you as a person—working around your flaws and bringing your best self to the table, day after day. Let’s take a moment to pause and reflect.

  • New research shows that 2/3 of brands are thinking of making substantial changes within the marketing department. In most cases, a single individual will be leading the charge. Whether or not they succeed will depend on many things—including the way they handle themselves personally.
  • So what can you do to ensure you’re part of the solution? First and foremost, you need to build credibility. Thomas Barta’s tip: “Take time to understand what’s actually going on. Walk the shop floor. Become part of the group by adding real value.”
  • We also love this simple advice from Gustavo Razzetti: “To build credibility, don’t pretend you have all the answers.”
  • The underlying concept here is something psychologists call intellectual humility. It’s about being aware of your own blind spots and open to learning from others. And, crucially, it’s about knowing you might be wrong.
  • A word of caution, though: “It’s not about being a pushover; it’s not about lacking confidence, or self-esteem. The intellectually humble don’t cave every time their thoughts are challenged.” Ultimately, it’s about finding a careful balance between self-belief and open-mindedness.
  • Making change happen with the marketing department also requires another sort of careful balance. On the one hand, you need to make a logical, rational case for change. And partner with finance to turn it into reality.
  • And on the other, you need to tell an inspiring story, never losing sight of the fact that change is fundamentally driven by emotion.

Try this

How intellectually humble are you? Author Shane Snow has created a simple self-assessment based on research from Pepperdine University, NYU, and the John Templeton Foundation. All answers are anonymous.

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Issue #71
Jun 16, 2019

Further Reading