The marketing world has changed, and so have the types of people who do well at it. I’m not talking about resume stuff, like where you worked, or where you went to college. This is about how you are wired. Personality.
Over the years, I had hired a lot of talented Brits, and had spent a small fortune on immigration lawyers to move as many people from London to NY as the laws would allow. I had the idea that Brits were better at advertising and marketing than us, because the people I was recruiting were so good.
But I was wrong. I took a trip to the UK, and noticed right away that the talent level was much the same. There were good people, and not so good people, just like here. That’s when it hit me. The people who had the gumption to up and move from England, where they had lived their entire lives and go to a strange country, were ‘different’ than those they left behind. They were comfortable with change. And in today’s environment where change is a constant, that is the perfect personality trait to succeed.
I found eventually that it didn’t matter if they moved here from London or San Paolo, Madrid or Capetown. Those who took the plunge ‘self-selected’ for change. If they were American, they tended to be people who grew up in small or rural towns and moved to the big city, which is just as much of a change as moving from one country to another. When they went back home to visit, most of the people they grew up with were doing exactly what they had been doing when they last saw them.
Most people like comfort, routine and security. But every society needs its explorers, or else no place new is ever discovered.
A new social media platform is like a new land to discover, explore, and eventually conquer. Then they need to move on and find new ground.
So, if you want talent today, look for the explorers. Or better yet, do something bold and adventurous and they’ll find you.