Marketing directors frozen out of boardroom

Marketing directors are still struggling to earn their places in the boardroom with only a minority of Britain’s biggest quoted companies appointing a marketer to the main board, according to new research from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).

The research shows that only 14% of FTSE 100 companies have a marketing professional on their main board although a further 15% do have a marketing professional on their executive or senior management team.

It also found that just 17% of company chief executives have a background in marketing compared with 34% who come from finance, 29% who rise up the ranks from operations, and 19% from general management.

CIM chairman Paul Gostick says: “Marketing makes a more significant contribution to the bottom line than any other business function. Companies that do not give it the attention it deserves will fail to meet their potential.”

CIM says that the results of its survey shows that too many big British companies are still failing to recognise the contribution the marketing profession makes to sales and profit growth by putting marketers in the driving seat.

Gostick does see an upside to the results – with so few big companies having marketers in senior positions “there is a great deal of opportunity for marketers within 86% of the FTSE top 100.” But he adds that it is up to marketers “to demonstrate that they add real value if they are to be taken seriously at board level.”

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