As we wrap up our M.A.R.T.E.C.H. metamorphosis, we are reminded that marketing technologists are serving others. The “H” in MarTech is hero, as in, make somebody else look like a hero. You are NOT designing incredible campaigns, writing great content, or creating awesome products that solve market problems, that is not your role. Marketing technologists are advising, guiding, enabling, informing and powering these decisions by supporting the teams that create all that amazing stuff with technologies that execute marketing functions at scale.
There are 5 ways to shape your servant mindset.
Manage Up: If you are trapped in a strict top-down organization hierarchy then just manage up. Easy to say but what does that mean? To serve your boss means to advise, coach, manage and lead them. You cannot wait for direction, you have done the due diligence and now you need to act. The statement of managing up reminds me of the book by David Marquet, “Turn the Ship Around.” David highlights the ladder of leadership where he advanced his team to communicate with, “I intend to.” The bottom of the ladder are employees who request specific direction, “Tell me what to do,’ and the top of the ladder represents action, “I have been doing.” What have you been doing as a marketing technologist without being told and how are you communicating that to your boss?
Humility: You might know that everything you do is powering the effectiveness of your marketing and giving insight into what to do next, but you don’t view yourself on a pedestal as a result. Instead, you are humbled by the opportunity to be part of the equation in helping your organization to create and communicate value.
Works Cited: When you think about how to track your servant leadership skills, you might consider how often you or the result of your work is showing up in the performance reviews of other people. If your organization does formal reviews, do you know how often employees are mentioning you as a contributor to their achievements? Why not?
Emotional Intelligence: The “E” in M.A.R.T.E.C.H. was almost emotional intelligence but an entrepreneurial mindset was more appropriate to encourage the continual investment and sculpting within the MarTech space. In a 1998 Harvard Business Review article by Daniel Goleman, “What Makes a Leader,” he summarized five components, of which we’ll share two, self-awareness and empathy. Self-awareness is important within servant leadership because to serve requires an understanding of yourself and your effect on others. Empathy is equally important because people have emotions and you need skills to read those emotions as you build your MarTech team and service your customers (internal or external).
Charity: Your MarTech powers should also be applied for good. Think about how many schools, churches, foundations, and other organizations don’t have access to the MarTech knowledge that you possess. As part of your servant approach, remember the theological virtue that is “the greatest of these.”Go forth and serve your customers while you hone the M.A.R.T.E.C.H. competencies helping your organization create and communicate value.