Us Marketing Academy scholars we are very fortunate that JKR, one of the academies faculty partners, kindly invite us along to the Platform event that they host on a regular basis.
The most recent event they held at Adam Street Members Club saw Phil Rumbol, Marketing Director at Cadburys (or at least he was until last Friday) telling us about his thoughts on leadership.
For those of you not in the know Rumbol was the man behind Cadburys gorilla advert as well as many others. Ross’s recent post on this Marketing Academy blog details some of his work a little further.
One of the over riding themes I took away from Phil’s speech was with regards to risk taking and how companies and individuals need to be prepared to take risks in order for businesses to be successful. It is about pushing boundaries until the point that you get scared, it is better to take risks for genuine differentiation then seeking certainty. It is important to accept that you will make mistakes as you can’t get everything right if you’re going to win big. Indeed, a great quote that has stuck in my head from his speech is that highlights this is ‘Know that I will get things right 7 times out of 10’.
He explained the importance of developing a risk taking culture and how risk adverse cultures can lead to nothing moving forward as people are too scared to make a mistake. It is also important to not be afraid to break the mould. You need to lead the customers, not follow them so it is important to invest more time in actually standing for something, for example the Gorilla adverts execution connected via YouTube with incredible clarity.
He also highlighted that it is about knowing when to take the right risks and to back them whole heartedly if you believe they are the right ones to win. One must be able to gain the respect of stakeholders with small wins and work your way up to the bigger risks. Once you have got the permission to do one thing and can demonstrate your skills by doing that really well you will start to convince the sceptics.
So heres to taking a few more risks along the path of life…