I asked her how -- as her career evolved from tactical to senior managerial -- she maintained technical prowess along with respect from advanced technical teams. While being a front-line developer wasn’t her calling, she said her ongoing effectiveness in leading teams and solving complex engineering issues came from the quality of her early training and technical foundation.
She underscored that tech is cyclical. It used to be all about mainframes and dumb terminals, though
now we're back to the same thing with the so-called cloud. The systems have iterated, and sometimes innovated, but the problems haven't changed all that much: performance, latency and security. A
strong foundation and ability to recognize and deploy talent enables leaders to tackle challenges as systems evolve.
I feel the same is true in advertising and media, which are becoming very technical. When new channels and ad technology come along, people tend to get excited and focus on new native metrics and frameworks.
Yet it is the new and shiny stuff that must adapt as
we come back to solve the same old tactical problems. Depending on your brand goals, they may involve some combination of targeting, response, recency, reach and frequency.
Ad technology and new channels are iterating quickly and becoming ever-more complex. We need front-line technical specialists dedicated to navigating and mastering them. Still, a strong classical advertising and media foundation is what will enable capable leaders to tackle the sustaining problems and deploy teams and resources to overcome them.