IT marketing doesn’t immediately come to mind when you think of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit”, but you may be surprised about the many similarities and lessons that can be learned from this classic story. Although it’s ostensibly about a group of dwarves and a hobbit on a journey to recover a treasure, the situations they experience can be an excellent learning opportunity for sales and marketing professionals.
Learn to Face Challenges
Bilbo Baggins, the main character, liked his home comforts and wanted everything to carry on the same with no unexpected changes or upheavals. Unfortunately, in the real world, we can’t really avoid upsets, and things never seem to go quite as planned no matter how much we try to engineer them. In Bilbo’s case, he was coerced into an adventure he wasn’t happy about but soon learned to roll with the punches. He certainly began in a very uncompromising way, but gradually became more accepting and willing to try anything to survive and help fulfill the quest.
An MSP business needs to react in similar ways to unexpected problems and unavoidable changes in order to succeed. You’ll need to be consistent in the face of challenges if you’re going to stop them from halting your progress. The best course of action is to evaluate what the issue is and see if you can adapt or change your processes to surmount the problem, allowing you to move on without giving up.
Play to Your Strengths
Bilbo was quite an unassuming hobbit with quiet and gentle ways, which was not initially thought to be useful at all on a quest that would probably involve fighting and conflict. He wasn’t there for that side of it, however, and his small and stealthy demeanor helped get past the dragon when they were searching for the dwarves’ treasure. He may not have been built for fighting, but as a burglar, he was the ideal candidate and was instrumental in the success of the quest.
MSP marketers should also make sure they’re playing to their strengths. If you can analyze your own weaknesses and those of your team, then it becomes an easy decision to split tasks between your staff so that everyone’s taking on the issues that best fit their skills. You wouldn’t expect one of the argumentative dwarves to be diplomatic, so in contrast fitting tasks to the appropriate team members can make for outstanding results.
The last point leads into this one, in that if the correct IT marketing personnel are working on specific tasks that reflect their talents, the result is a stronger and more cohesive team, which is almost guaranteed to have a greater chance of success. The dwarves, a hobbit, and a wizard may be an unlikely mix, but each brought different talents to the group and the overall result was resounding success.
If you can make sure that talent and skill are utilized in the right places, and people are happy with where the team is going and how it will get there, this can make a greater difference than the sum of its parts.
A cohesive team is great for business, but good leadership is essential too. A group without a leader is often indecisive and disjointed, which makes it difficult to agree on methods and direction; don’t let that be your team. When Gandalf left the dwarves and Bilbo in the middle of their adventure, there were many arguments and discord, but if you have good leadership with decisive and well-thought-out practices and a team working together to the same ends, you’re perfectly placed to succeed.
“The Hobbit” shows how different people can come together to create success, and if you can apply some of these skills to your IT marketing, it won’t be long before you slay your own dragons (metaphorically speaking, of course) and succeed in the cutthroat world of business. Don’t give up when faced with challenges and setbacks and grow your business by playing to your strengths and maintaining good leadership. In that way, your own quest for treasure may be just beginning, guiding your company through heightened and enduring success.