For all of you excited and passionate nominees out there who are entering the race to be one of the lucky 30 MA scholars, you need to be ready for a long battle to prove yourself and embrace the change you are about to embark on.
Change is upon us…..
Step 1 – Election Fever
May election time is fast approaching, the leaflets are in the post, smear campaigns have started against fellow potential scholars and you are preparing to canvas day and night for that work nomination. This must mean the battle is on for some powerful, completely free learning & mentoring.
Much like a politician gets to base themselves in the Houses of Parliament, have a second home, claim meal expenses & usually get an invite to Rupert Murdoch’s summer party, we get the benefit of one-to one mentoring from the UK’s most high profile CEO’s, CMO’s and entrepreneurs, a stunning base (CIM HQ), a second home (CIM Dorms, Cookham) and all the free food you need (Kate ‘Cadbury’ Wall), the only thing missing is that summer party invite, although I would settle for a coffee with magical mentor Ronan Dunne or an invite back to Andrew McGuiness’s spectacular office at Freud’s. Sounding good, eh? This could all be yours, but you must not forget that the one thing linking them together is that you need someone to believe in you and more importantly, you won’t get there without support and a track record for going above and beyond at work and in your personal life. Election fever has truly begun.
Get pumped up and roll up those sleeves…
Step 2 – Starting The Race
You need to jump many hurdles to get to the Promised Land. You need to be nominated, and that requires getting a precious vote from your company CMO/Director. If you haven’t already, work out a stakeholder strategy to show the powers that be your capabilities, strengths, innovative desire and leadership qualities. Once the nomination is in, it’s time to start thinking about your CV and show reel, which is when the real pressure begins.
Suddenly you have to become a creative director, brand manager, script writer, editor, sound expert, tech genius and account man all in one go. Man up, take the time out to do it properly and let the electorate (judging panel) know what you are about and why you are – and will – continue to be a great leader and keen learner. Remember you are selling the sizzle AND the steak, and no one wants to eat a cheap piece of meat.
Don’t make a pig’s ear of your show reel…
Step 3 – Battle Bus Tour & Sharing Your Manifesto
Well done, you managed to market yourself and get through to the next round. Now it’s the hard part. Coming face to face with the voters (mentors and judges), engaging in the live debates (interviews) and backing up what you displayed in your manifesto (CV and show reel).
On this journey you meet some wonderful, passionate and very experienced people. You want to impress them all and have a limited time to do so. You plan to get in as many sound bites as you can and you prep yourself to be grilled by Paxman. The TV debates arrive (interview) and it is best to be relaxed, they fill you with confidence and are keen to listen. Just be yourself and show them how much you want this, and remember, do not lie, because you will be found out by the press (Marketing Academy). The traveling may grind you down, but a quick phone call to a loved one will pick you back up. Remember, it’s a long road to success and you need to show you have the gut for it.
Don’t moan, set it in stone…
You need the female vote to succeed…
Step 4 – Election Day
The Power is out of your hands…
Time is up, you are now powerless and you can eventually relax……………..UNTIL the exit poll is announced on the BBC (phone call). Who is that calling off a private number? Is it Sherilyn or Camilla? Who is the good cop and who is the bad cop and why have they decided to call in the middle of a team meeting?!
You call back, its Sherilyn and she’s cheery. Has she had a boozy lunch with some big cheese, has she received her deserved knighthood? No, she is ecstatic because you have made it; you have won the local election. You have been elected and will represent your constituency and she couldn’t be happier for you. You try to act calm, but it is not possible, the calm persona you have given off for months is dropped and you jump up and down like a camp Butlins entertainer. She delivers those golden words ‘see you next week for the 2015/16 scholars launch party’ – you made it. It’s time to troll the mates who said you would not be accepted and more importantly call your parents and loved ones to lap up the praise. You have made yourself and family proud, you have achieved a big step in unlocking your potential and fighting for your voters, but remember never ever forget how you got there (work’s empowering nomination), what you promised (your show reel/application/interview) and never let down the people that made it happen (Marketing Academy), or you will find yourself in the political/marketing wilderness (working in the marketing department at Channel 5*).
*joke, I am just jealous of their highbrow programming………
After a long triumphant day it is time to console the marketers that sadly did not make the grade. Their dream is over and yours is just beginning.
Step 5 – Re-election
Once you are done with your first term (boot camp), it is time to press on for a second, IF your reputation is still intact and you still carry the passion needed to succeed. You take your key learnings, galvanise the troops and get set to continue your journey into making a difference, in the blind hope that you don’t make a political gaff.
Don’t get involved in a Pig incident…
Good luck on your campaign and see you at orientation in May 2016.