Peter Drucker, perhaps the greatest business academic ever, died on November 11 at age 95 in Claremont, California. Many know him for developing concepts like knowledge workers and decentralized management. We at MarketingNPV thank him for two insights that have an impact on every minute of our working days.
The first is management by objectives. The concept of setting objectives and allowing teams to work toward them is now commonplace, but before Drucker, command and control reigned. We at MarketingNPV cannot imagine doing our jobs without the discipline of MBO already in place. In fact, measurement of progress towards marketing objectives is much of what we do.
The second great insight we use every day to help clarify marketing’s role within a company. Drucker wrote, "Business, because its function is to create and sustain a customer, has only two purposes: Marketing and Innovation. Everything else is an expense." Many well-established companies undervalue both elements because they are living of the franchises created by earlier marketing and innovation. Success often boils down to how well the company tends its brands and customer franchise. And without measurement, marketers are hobbled in their ability to make the most of the assets under their care.
Pete Drucker may no longer be with us, but his work lives on in almost every business person every day.