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Ariunaa Enkhamgalan

Why Don’t CMOs Stay In Their Roles Very Long In Mongolia?

Why are senior marketing leaders leaving so quickly? Is it money, bad managers, a lack of respect for marketing or the wrong soft skills for the job.

If you look at the global statistics, the tenure of a global CMO is now 43 months . This is a disappointing length of time that is about half that of the company’s CEO and CFO. Of course, that’s on a global level. In Mongolia, it’s a very different (and worse) story. Most senior marketers are new to their roles or have only been there a short period of time. Mongolia is a notoriously difficult market to get data about but take a cursory look at LinkedIn for “Head of Marketing”, “CMO” or “Marketing Director” roles in Mongolia and most of these professionals are only in their role for 6 months, and rarely beyond one and a half years. So what’s going on with marketers in Mongolia?

We asked Damien Cummings, a former regional CMO and current CEO of Peoplewave, a company that looks at employee performance and people management to share his insights.

“The greatest challenge a new senior marketer has is their ‘soft’ skills. Many marketers have great advertising, sales and marketing skills and experience but this doesn’t easily translate to the boardroom. To succeed with other C-level executives, you need to build trust, have a clear vision of how marketing can support sales, customer service and the business strategy, and focus much more on building strong relationships. Being a head of marketing is very different to being an operationally-focused marketing manager.”

We also asked a number of senior Mongolian marketers, who gave us a few interesting but sensitive insights into the problem. Many of whom were reluctant to comment on such a sensitive issue but gave us insights if we didn’t reveal their name. Some of the common themes include:

“People leave for the money. There isn’t a great talent pool in Ulaanbaatar so when a new senior marketing role comes up, they leave for an increase in salary. Job hopping has become quite common.”

“Many CEOs are not very good managers. They can be bossy and don’t respect what marketing does for the company. In an environment like that people leave pretty quickly.”

So the question we’d like to raise from Marketing In Asia is – why are senior marketing leaders leaving so quickly? Is it money, bad managers, a lack of respect for marketing or the wrong soft skills for the job, or something else? Please let us know in the comments section below.

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Ariunaa Enkhamgalan
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Ariunaa is the Marketing In Asia's Editor for Mongolia. She is also a Digital Marketing professional with various experience in the B2C and B2B environments. Connect with her via LinkedIn.

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