September 16, 2008

Core Competencies

Filed under: Marketing Philosophy, School — Robert John Ed @ 4:10 pm

After taking the accounting mid term, I’m realizing that my core competency is not that.  In a world where we are frequently told to be our own brand, be our own business, it’s time to address your core competency as well as what your strategic vision for operations are.

I don’t devalue any of the disciplines being taught to me on a day by day basis.  Financial accounting, stats, strategy and marketing today, operations, managerial accounting and finance in a little over a month.  The core (no relation) here is strenuous and packed.  Seven full classes, two small time classes (more like seminars), resume and interviewing practices and sessions, networking and informational interviews and finally actual internship interviews starting early next year.  It’s busy.  Almost everyone here handles it incredibly well.

What warrants mention is that as an MBA candidate, we have to focus in on core competencies and leverage them into careers.  That means not stressing out about the fact that I probably just got a 72% on a midterm oriented around skill sets that I won’t be utilizing often, if ever.  Figuring out the extraneous skills that best complement your competencies is the key.  Sorry, but you have to be able to read and assess balance sheets, income statements and cash flow.  You have to understand the value in being able to assess a confidence interval with market research.  There are certain pieces of this puzzle that are no questions.

There is also a lot of gray area.  As a marketing pro, you should have a solid knowledge of current demographics, consumer behavior, pricing strategies and probably some negotiation ability.  But then the questions come.  Should you shore up skills that aren’t necessarily prerequisite, but further accentuate current abilities?  Or do you focus purely on what you’ll likely be using initially out of school and attempt to learn on the run with the other stuff?  I have to meet with some people in order to get a better handle on what is needed directly out of school.  My goal is to handle the P&L for a major brand out of school, so it’s time to get some research done on what that entails and the skill sets that allow for it.

Back to work.


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