Saturday 23rd September 2017

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    Our Chairman

    Chairman's Message

    The world’s fastest growing economies, like Brazil, Russia, India, China and now arguably Africa too, all share an understanding of the importance of people within this profession to their current and future success. Indeed, more companies today are looking to their Marketing Professionals to help them not just survive but grow through these challenging times.

    So it is no surprise that there are now estimated to be at least 20m people working in definable marketing roles across the world. And, with more-and-more being expected of Marketing Professionals, including in C-suites, it is only right that at Global Marketing Network we’re working equally hard at providing the support and capabilities that the worlds’ CMOs say they need.

    Importance of GMN to the Marketing Profession - and to Employers - Worldwide

    Of course, with this number of marketers in the world, coupled with widespread acceptance of the need for marketers to become increasingly professional, there is both a very sizeable market for GMN to serve, and a compelling driver for the transformation of the Marketing Profession, as encapsulated by GMN’s vision. Recognising that success in Marketing is a pre-requisite to much-coveted growth, Employers and Business Leaders have been seeking this transformation for a while, too.

    To quote Professor Greg Marshall, a senior members the GMN Global Faculty: "The perils facing the modern CMO have also been well-documented in recent publications such as Bloomberg Business Week, McKinsey Quarterly, Fast Company, and others. Many have complained about CEO under-utilisation of the CMO perspective in making important business-level decisions, charging that CEOs do not realise that the absence of a CMO perspective can negatively impact long-term organisational performance success."

    From right around the world, the Marketing Profession’s response to these historic criticisms, certainly in the last two to three years, has been to support and resource GMN (and at the very highest levels) as the driver of this transformation. In fact, nowadays, GMN is honoured to count amongst its supporters leading Professional Marketers from right across the world, as evidenced through all our Global Faculty Members and the widely-respected thought-leaders who contribute to our Global CMO magazine.

    It does seem to be generally agreed that the Marketing Profession must raise its game, worldwide. Arguably, there has never been a better opportunity to do so. At GMN, we are intent on leaving as our shared legacy a better, bigger, stronger, more unified and more respected Marketing Profession than the one we entered. We are delighted every day to welcome new members and supporters, but, quite simply, to accomplish this most worthwhile aim, we need your support too. Will you join us this year?

    The establishment of a truly global body for Marketing Professionals has met with what I can only describe as a fantastic response – as evidenced by our 30,000-strong membership, our Global Faculty, our Global Advisory Council, and our Partners – the Academic Institutions, National Membership Associations, and, of course, Corporate Supporters from around the world.

    Our Global CMO magazine, our Global CMO Community and, of course, this website all add to the reasons for Marketing Professionals to join GMN, coupled with more convenient ways of doing so, too.

    And our Academic Partnership Package enables Universities and Business Schools to provide their students, alumni and staff with valuable benefits such as access to our magazine and discounted student membership, whilst at the same time enabling us to provide more value to our Professional Members with preferential rates on the best conferences and other events that we are able to endorse, participate in and promote.

    I welcome these developments, which improve considerably our ability to deliver enhanced membership benefits and to communicate with Members in the way that they should (and do!) reasonably expect from a 21st century professional body committed to raising standards in Marketing Practice. 'Designed-in' to most other professions, Continuing Professional Development is absolutely set to be a way of (professional) life for Marketers.

    The importance of our shared values and behaviours

    Aspiring to do better tomorrow than we did today is easy; doing it, much less so. It is not easy to define with rigour exactly what is a 'value' and what is a ‘behaviour’. What is important is that there are ways of doing things acceptable to the many, and then there are other ways, much less acceptable...

    The fact is that valuable international trade deals are being lost where there is even the suspicion of under-hand, unethical or unacceptable practice. There doesn’t have to be illegality for a deal to fail.

    By extension, it is pretty clear that, if we are to realise our vision for the Marketing Profession, a code of conduct followed by our Professional Members will be a vital element in the successful transformation of the Profession. And it really isn’t just us saying that change is needed in values and behaviours, either. We only need to look at one sector - banking - to understand that, no matter how big or valuable it is, how we go about our business is just as important (arguably more so, for the long-term health and value of the brand, and maybe even the country), than quite how well we perform or deliver in any given quarter or year. And banking is very far from alone.

    So what are we doing about all this, at GMN? Well, in this digital age, with global trade conducted increasingly on-screen and less-and-less face-to-face, it is vital that the Marketing Profession keeps pace with developments, and as far as possible anticipates them, too. We may even initiate some of them. To this end, I encourage you to review our current Code of Conduct and let us have your feedback as to how it should be updated and improved.

    I'd like to see us do much more in this area too, as part of the education and training of upcoming generations of Professional Marketers. This is an area vital to the long-term health and success of any Profession, and so I would welcome broader contributions too, particularly from senior marketers willing and able to mentor our young members – typically graduates or perhaps final-year under-graduates aspiring to become Professional Members within the next two - five years.

    Indeed, it is in this vein that we continually seek to broaden our range of subject specialists, create new opportunities for innovation and collaboration, and provide unique opportunities for Marketing Professionals - our Members - to learn from the very best in their field, in all the marketing disciplines.

    One of the ways in which we will be seeking to accomplish this is through the creation of endowed Professorial Chairs within our Global Faculty. Endowment gifts offer an extraordinary opportunity for philanthropic benefactors to support and expand the world-leading research such as is already conducted by members of our Faculty into the big Marketing issues of our time.

    And an endowed Chair does more than this, as it provides independence as well as security for the occupant - with such gifts continuing to fund posts for generations to come. If you would like to suggest major topics to be covered within this scheme, or discuss how to endow a Professorial Chair at our Global Faculty, please do make contact with us. This is a vital aspect of GMN’s future work as the Global Accreditation Body for Marketing Professionals, and a great way to make an enduring contribution yourself.

    Get involved - and let us know what you think

    You will have gathered, I hope, that we are intent on delivering for the Marketing Profession the world-class professional accreditation body which is now widely accepted as required.

    GMN is already supported by senior members of the Marketing Profession world-wide. I now encourage you to engage with GMN (perhaps now as a player, if up until now you have only been a spectator), to become a Professional Member (if you have not done so already), and to provide us with your feedback (which we always welcome, so that we can provide you with even better support in the future).

    We look forward to being of service to you throughout your career and hope that, in the meantime, you find what you are looking for here, on our website

    Ian S Derbyshire
    Chairman