ITIABTWC posted last week about whether a great Creative was made up of the same stuff as a great Creative Director and therefore whether seeing one as the natural progression of the other was actually a sensible idea.
It strikes me that it’s the same in lots of other disciplines, including Planning. It’s a good job I’ve gone freelance as frankly, I’m pretty rubbish at both office politics and managing people so progression up the managerial job ladder towards titles like ‘Planning Director’ or ‘Head of Planning’ was always going to be problematic (but I hope I’m still a pretty good Planner).
It does seem bonkers that the way we reward people for being brilliant at something skill and aptitude specific is by effectively putting them in charge of running HR and finance, thus redirecting their time and attention from the thing they’re recognised as being good at.
image borrowed from here
Of course as Ben’s original post points out, some people are actually better at the managing and politics bits than the core skill. But they are unlikely to be high profile enough to get recognised as a talent to promote into the senior echelons of man management.
Maybe we need to start remunerating by skillset in terms of management ability and/or specialism skill – but not necessarily keep creating roles that require equal brilliance in both.