In the age of disruption, marketing leaders can no longer rely on “the way it’s always been done.” As markets change and customer expectations evolve, CMOs must change and evolve with them. Organizational restructuring, cross-department collaboration, cohesive digital strategies and systems—these responsibilities fall to the CMO. To make transformation seamless, CMOs must possess a very particular set of skills.

That’s right. You need Liam-Neeson-in-the-movie-Taken-level precision. Here’s why: the best strategies are only as effective as their tactical execution, and the execution is only as good as the leader who guides the change. It’s absolutely crucial that Transformational CMOs be agile. As a CMO you can’t be agile without an expert understanding of the story, the strategies that story demands, and the systems in place to create a compelling, cohesive customer experience.

Whether you are a CMO (or looking to hire one), view this SlideShare for a better understanding of the 7 key characteristics and skills that a CMO must possess to effectively implement transformational change.

7 Skills Transformational CMOs Must Possess from Dave Sutton

7 Skills Transformational CMOs Must Possess

1. You must be lean and agile.

Transformational CMOs must have an understanding of lean and agile principles, and the ability to apply those principles across all systems and strategies. The ability to align your departments with an agile mindset will require a degree of boldness.


2. Be performance-driven.

Transformational CMOs are results driven and measure success with KPIs clearly linked to business performance. You must have an in-depth undersanding of business operations, an analytical approach to problems solving, and the ability to inspire others to action. Be like Liam Neeson and create a performance-driven culture within your organization.

3. Break down organizational silos.

In addition to partnering with the CEO to grow the business, it is the Transformational CMO’s responsibility to break down organizational silos and bring internal alignment to departments and technology stacks. Quickly identify timewasters and fix bottlenecks to create aligned solutions that build momentum and drive growth.

4. Be a MarTech expert.

Transformational CMOs use their understanding of Marketing Technology software to assess how it relates to the distinct needs of the organization. Technology stacks should integrate across departments to create a comprehensive customer view. With over 5,000 marketing technology solutions, this is becoming a more daunting task than ever.

5. Ability to work with everyone and lead company-wide change.

In order to lead organizational change, the transformational CMO must be able—not just willing—to work with multiple stakeholders, managers, and teams. From partnering with HR on Employer Branding to working with customer service to QA testing new products/services, to compiling and analyzing data, Transformational CMOs work closely with other departments.

6. Deep understanding of the Customer Journey.

Transformational CMOs go beyond just crunching the data; they look beyond just marketing metrics and review how the entire enterprise is engaging the customer. By developing a deep understanding of pain points and the overall customer journey, they are able to create a simple and compelling brand story that makes customers want to engage.

Don’t be this Liam Neeson:

7. Ability to convert analytical insights into solutions that drive demand.

It’s much easier and less complicated to cut costs than it is to drive topline growth. Not only is this task challenging, it’s one of the most vital to transformational change and perhaps even moving to the corner office. Hire a CMO who can step into a CEO role to get more value out of the marketing department.

In addition to possessing these skills and abilities, Transformational CMOs have 3 major obstacles to overcome: Simplicity in Story, Clarity in Strategy, and Alignment in Systems. Based on our collective experiences helping brands move to the TopRight corner of the market, we have compiled an ebook to help you ignite transformational change within your organization.

If you want to learn how to transform your marketing, engage your customers, and grow your business then this ebook is for you. Simply tell us your current marketing challenge and get FREE access to TRANSFORMATIONAL MARKETING: Moving to the TopRight [ebook].

Download it for free now