New budgets, new opportunities
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New budgets, new opportunities

With new annual budgets becoming available at the start of the financial year, marketers should put some aside for their own – and the department’s – professional development.

As new budgets arrive, marketing managers and directors have the opportunity to invest in training to boost their own, and their employees’, effectiveness. Training can provide marketers with the right skills to take on a more influential role within the organisation and, ultimately, to lead change.

And yet, while a well-managed career development programme should be an ongoing process, in busy organisations committing to training also draws on resources, costing time and money, and taking employees away from their day-to-day duties.

In the longer term, however, its benefits are many and range from helping to increase sales and grow the business, to softer measurements such as increased employee satisfaction. Remember that a well-looked-after employee is likely to be a good advocate for the business.

Here are four reasons to back training initiatives for you and your team:

  1. In recent years, the skillset required to be successful in marketing has expanded significantly – training can keep marketers up to date, helping them understand their customers and sustain their business’s competitiveness.
  2. Furthermore, there are arguably now more marketing skills needed than one person can practically employ. You will need specialists in your team, and that means specialist training.
  3. It improves overall career prospects and boosts morale by bringing differently experienced team members together, and creates an atmosphere of continual, supported learning.
  4. Marketing is professionalising, with companies increasingly aware that marketers need the right qualifications and demonstrable skills to do the job properly.

If you decide to go down this path, and put some of your hard-won budget into professional development, consider the following:

  1. Identify which skills your team will need to deliver on the organisation’s goals – there is no need for you or the rest of the department to tick every marketing box. Once you understand the organisation’s needs, you can work out the best way to bring the relevant knowledge into your team. Filling a marketing skills gap can be a much cheaper option than committing to making new hires or paying for external expertise.
  2. Encourage experimentation. Giving team members the chance to try new things will increase their experience, and can deliver interesting and productive results.
  3. Encourage the sharing of newly gained knowledge with the wider marketing team – and other departments – cementing marketing knowledge as a central pivot within the organisation. A mentoring programme can help cascade insight and experience to a wider group of beneficiaries.
  4. Seek external help. This could involve bringing trainers into the office, or encouraging/financing marketers on the team to pursue a training course or qualification.

Get ahead of your competition in 2017 by upskilling with CIM. Offering a broad range of both training courses and qualifications, we have the learning solution for you.

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