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CareerBliss recently published its annual inventory of the 50 Happiest Companies in America, and scrolling through that list inspired me to start thinking about what it is that actually makes a company a “happy” place to work.

According to Bradley Brummel, Ph.D. in workplace psychology, who’s quoted on the CareerBliss website, “Employees in all of these (50 happiest) companies have the freedom to use their knowledge, skills, and abilities to solve interesting problems. This type of problem solving can be intrinsically motivating and leads to a happy workplace.”

I couldn’t agree more. For me, a “happy” environment is one where there’s a mindful, productive and supportive culture serving as the foundation for challenging, thought-provoking and meaningful projects.

And now that I’ve written that last sentence, I can’t help but ask: Shouldn’t that be precisely the kind of environment in every marketing department these days? I’d argue that, stacked up against those parameters, modern marketing has the potential to be among the “happiest” of all jobs. Think about it:

Today’s marketers must solve interesting problems. Modern marketers have to ensure their message is heard across more channels, using more platforms –and above more noise –than ever before. Success now requires constant (and often rapid) innovation.

Today’s marketers must tap into a variety of skills. Years ago, marketing was more art than science. These days, marketing demands a blend of both creativity and technology, imagination and computational analysis, art and science. As a result, marketers can flex their muscle –and fire up their brain power –in lots of different ways, and that makes every day fresh and exciting.

Marketing is meaningful. Now that the customer experience has been shown to directly correlate with revenue growth, marketing has begun to permeate virtually all aspects of the enterprise. Fortunately, technology has evolved at a similar pace. Marketing spend software provides marketers with visibility across today’s multi-channel campaigns, so today’s marketers can know –and show –exactly what’s working . . . and what isn’t. These days, marketing is meaningful because it’s well-planned and delivers demonstrable ROI.

And there’s more . . .

According to the CMO Council’s sixth annual State of Marketing audit, CMOs are now overwhelmingly positive about their roles and functional areas, with more than 50 percent reporting budget increases and nearly half anticipating hiring new talent.

Clearly, marketing is beginning to get the recognition it deserves in the C-Suite –so much so that the CMO Council even went so far as to declare 2013 “The Year of the Marketer.”

But by focusing on all this “happy talk,” am I implying that there is no strife, no conflict, no tension among marketers and their teams?

Of course not. The marketing industry remains in the throes of dramatic transformation, and any revolution like that (in any field) is bound to take a toll. We all know today’s marketers are tasked with constantly driving change within the enterprise –but what some marketing execs forget is that marketers, themselves, must also be continually changing, refining their approaches and performance.

These days, CMOs have to be strategic about raising their teams to new levels of achievement. (See tips I’ve learned in my earlier blog post, “The CMO Whisperer: Five Insights To Drive High-Performing Teams.”)

After all, at the end of the day, it’s the combination of interesting challenges, enhanced recognition (both internally and externally) and committed leadership that will truly make marketers –and their companies, as a whole –happy.