We caught up with Andy Letting, alumni of the Marketing Leaders Programme, to find out the techniques from the programme that have become part of his leadership DNA.
Hi, I’m Andy and since taking part in the Marketing Leaders Programme (MLP) I have spent the majority of my time in digital marketing contract roles helping businesses improve their digital performance, from customer acquisition and conversion to retention, the MLP has been especially valuable throughout the various contracts I have completed.
I can’t believe 6 years have passed since I attended MLP, I have fond memories of the course, meeting existing and future industry leaders and more importantly understanding myself in the context of leadership and life.
With top leadership coaches at the helm we couldn’t be in safer hands, providing us with all their experience and tool kits needed to be a successful leader. At the time I was the only digital person amongst my peers, this was a great opportunity to hear from the brand side of a number of global super brands, such as Shell, P&G, UB and many more.
Still to this day, I am in contact with many of my MLP group, either meeting at The Marketing Society events, chatting on LinkedIn, coaching students or meeting for a beer. This includes the inspirational guest speakers, who gave up their valuable time to share their experiences and advice on leadership and balancing the demands of life, which was super insightful. I consider them as contacts for life.
The core reason for attending the course was to understand leadership and become a better leader myself and develop techniques to deliver “my best self”.
It is with some of these tools that have helped me to deliver “my best self” consistently, which isn’t easy in a world which is changing and speeding up at the same time. There are 4 techniques I regularly use from The MLP toolkit, which are now part of my leadership DNA.
I completely underestimated the importance of asking yourself “how are you today?” Those few seconds or minutes to reflect on your mood, energy and wellbeing can completely change the dynamic of the day. In most cases I have found this can turn a negative into a positive by being able to adapt yourself to the challenge and the stakeholders. I will sometimes check-in 4 or 5 times a day, usually for a tight deadline or for an important meeting, I have found this especially useful in fast paced digital transformational roles working across a range of business units and business cultures where performance is tough and the need to change quickly is the priority.
Your Light & Shadow
This is one of my favourite tools and one I have never heard referenced other than from this programme. It’s so true, as you climb the career ladder, your accountability and responsibility grows with it, which makes perfect sense. However, recognising everybody has a shadow no matter how big or small, I found it important to recognise your peers will be looking at you through various different lenses as you progress through an organisation. This has ensured I am consistently “me” regardless of stakeholder or situation. Putting others shadows before mine has been critical to demonstrate it’s about them not you! This has especially helped me when working in various project teams with stakeholders coming from a range of background and experiences.
I didn’t realise until MLP how important your energy is and the impact on others. I use this as part of my check in process, I am always mindful of my energy especially in meetings be it on or offline, a low energy has the power to completely derail a meeting and put a project at risk. This is an area I will often spend time with my team to discuss and help them understand the impact of their own energy and the impact it has on your shadow.
Time to Think
There has never been enough time, however MLP has helped me be more disciplined to give myself time to think. This is super important especially in fast changing businesses and should never be underestimated. To achieve this, I avoid meetings on Fridays and use this time to think, having this time allows me to plan for tomorrow, rather than be constantly working in the day. For me this is where the strategic ideas and solutions to challenges come from.
These are just some of the many tools I use from the MLP, you will discover other tools to use throughout the course and ones you can easily adapt to your work or home life. Your important first step, is to leave the office behind and act as a sponge taking in every ounce of knowledge that is being shared, you will be exhausted but inspired.
Find out more and apply or nominate for our 2022 programme by 4 April here.