Magazine article Marketing

Restructuring: Phasing out the Brand Manager

Magazine article Marketing

Restructuring: Phasing out the Brand Manager

Article excerpt

Hello. I'd like a quiet word with all brand managers out there reading this.

You people have got a difficult job. I really sympathise with the difficulties you face, on a daily basis, dealing with agencies -- however good or bad those agencies are. But a radical thought has occurred to me which could make your (and everybody else's life) a lot simpler.

Because I think you've got such a difficult job, we should do away with the job function altogether.

Sorry if that sounds a bit harsh. I've got nothing against you personally. But I really think that your job function just gets in the way.

Look at the problems brand managers face. They are never given enough responsibility to effect any real change. They are hamstrung by hierarchical structures. If they have any power at all (which is questionable) it's just the power to say no to something (never to say yes), and the hideous responsibility of double-guessing their bosses. Or else they're just used as bearers of bad news.

Don't get me wrong. Most of the brand managers I've met have been bright and personable, and some of them have clearly had the potential to become outstanding.

But let's face it, the system you work in is a nightmare. Why not have a company structure that's much simpler? How about having a marketing director and under him or her a number of marketing managers with real power and responsibility? And do away with the notion of brand managers completely...

I suppose someone's going to say that you've got to train your future marketing managers. …

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