Monday, May 24, 2010

Psychological ailments of the modern marketing professional: Which of these 6 conditions does your boss display?

By Marc Sokol

If you ever watched the TV series Monk, then you will remember a detective who never misses a clue and always solves the case because of his somewhat loveable but annoyingly obsessive-compulsive personality.
Guess what? Marketing professionals are not without a few psychological foibles of their own, and I’m about to tell you what they are….

1. OMD (Obsessive Measurement Disorder) – most prevalent among high-flying marketing professionals, these people want to measure everything! Not that any of us ever display OMD, but aren’t you glad I numbered this list of disorders?

2. OMD, Type AB – a variation of the primary disorder, but these folks try to assign everyone into some type of control group (and by the way, have you wondered if only half of you are getting the post with this particular malady included?)
3. Persona Delusion Deluxe – to hear them talk, the personas these marketing professionals have created are absolutely real. Remember, you don’t have to worry if your colleagues talk to the personas, but keep your distance when they tell you the personas have been talking back to them

4. VOS (Visionary Optimism Syndrome) – the situation may look hopeless to the rest of us, but these folks insist they see a brighter future. Admit it, when you see this behavior on a really bad day, you just wonder what they have been smoking. On the positive side (which is about all you see if you have this syndrome), these marketing professionals stay calm no matter how much chaos occurs in the workplace.

5. JTS (Job Title Schizophrenia) – not to be confused with multiple personality disorder, these executives display a chameleon like capability to be CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) one day, CCO (Chief Customer Officer) the next, and SVP of Social Media and Integrative Marketing the day after. These changes are often triggered by the latest marketing fad as reported in newspapers or the Harvard Business Review.

6. EADD (Executive Attention Deficit Disorder) - Not that anyone in your company will have this, but I have known marketing professionals to display EADD. It’s not organic, but it really is psychological. I described the root cause of it in a different post.  I’m sure the CMO of your company never displays symptoms of this, nor do the senior executives. A three-step intervention can be found here.

So what gives at your office? Can you diagnose what ails your marketing colleagues? There must be at least ten disorders that afflict marketing professionals in today’s crazy organizations, but I only shared six of them.

What disorders have you seen?

Marc Sokol is an organizational psychologist with an eye for how people and teams can be more effective, even in a dysfunctional company. He is part of M Squared Group, a data-driven marketing consultancy.

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SEO Company Mumbai said...

Nice blog sharing a great information.

Jackie said...

Great list - I think the easiest to work with of these is the VOS - especially compared to the opposite.

Marc Sokol said...

Thanks for the comment, Jackie. I find that marketing professionals tend to be less "Eeyore" and more "Tigger", so there is that bright VOS future even if not a calm demeanor. Now Eeyore and his counterpart 'Chicken Little' would make for a scary image of a senior marketing professional, wouldn't it? Hmm....I think I've just fused character persona with elements of VOS. I better go see my local marketing psychologist about that :-)

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