Grabbing Hold of a Speeding Train

I’m finally back on the trail to posting. It’s been a crazy insane few weeks. I walked up to a major railroad crossing in life, watched a couple of trains roll by, and then reached out and grabbed a speeding bullet train. A lot will be changing in the coming days and weeks, but here’s a quick update of what’s been happening.

Last week I joined Global Fluency as Senior VP of Strategic Planning and Business Development with, among other things, responsibility for growing the CMO Council. After seven years as president of Cymbic, this is a big change and, as I’m learning more and more every passing day, one of the smartest moves I’ve ever made. I’m plugging into a network that undoubtedly represents the most concentrated circle of marketing brainpower ever–1300 of the top marketing executives from the companies that literally define the global economy. The council hosts an ongoing series of intensive executive forums, in-depth surveys and topical research papers. Unlike many of the opportunistic conference circuits that are long on sponsor fluff and short on content, the opposite is true here. I’ve struggled for the past week just to get up to speed on all the programs–there are initiatives on marketing metrics, efficiency and effectiveness, pipeline development, sales and marketing integration, global competitiveness, personalization–the list goes on and on, but focuses on all of the bedrock issues I’ve been digging into for the past 3 years and more.

If I sound excited, it’s because after years of ranting about the pathetic state of marketing, I finally found the place where relevant solutions are being forged not by self-proclaimed gurus, but by the marketers themselves.  It’s a great program and a great team running the show, and I couldn’t be happier. The opportunity to be on the frontline for the remaking of the marketing function has never been greater.

So what will happen with Cymbic? The verdict is out. This whole trajectory began when my partner, Kenichi Nishiwaki, was tapped for the position of Creative Director of Landor Asia, and couldn’t turn down the opportunity for a victorious return to Japan. My other partner, Russ Baker, and I looked at everything and decided it was time to jump into the abyss. We’re looking at a couple of opportunities, including an offer to sell Cymbic to another agency that wants to enter the tech market in the Bay Area.

As for marketonomy, I’m planning to keep the blog going, though some changes will likely be coming–first of all cosmetically, and then in content as I’m sure my posting will start to reflect more of the CMO interactions I’ll be engaged in with Global Fluency and the CMO Council. On the immediate horizon, I’m heading to a CMO Council Forum in Chicago next week on Marketing Performance Measurement, where Jonathan Knowles from Brand Finance will be giving the keynote. Look for some posts on the event next week, though I won’t be waiting until then to get back to posting.

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