4 Productivity Styles Every Great Marketing Team Needs


I wish we had someone who would play devil’s advocate.

I wish we had someone who had a clearer vision.

I wish we had someone who would just do the thing.

Sound familiar? If you’re going to be great at marketing, you need great people.

But having great people alone isn’t enough. You need people who balance each other out, who fill in the gaps of others to create an unstoppable marketing machine.

Every team member has unique DNA. It’s that individual approach they bring to the table and their compatibility with others that will allow you to consistently ship projects of high value.

With every opportunity, brands have to consider the who, what, when, how, and why of the task at hand. Covering each base requires a team balance of four distinct productivity styles:

1. Planners

Planners establish the when and how for the project. For planners, predictability and clarity are the name of the game, while ambiguity is the enemy. They tend to be strong, direct communicators who apply the necessary communication to get things done.

Great marketing doesn’t happen without accountability. You need planners to oversee deliverables and to keep the critical path at the top of everyone’s mind.

2. Arrangers

Arrangers are all about who. When presented with an objective, a specific person who can add value pops into their mind. Arrangers may or may not have fantastic project management or strategy skills, but they’re fabulous at maximizing collaboration — a skill less likely to be seen in planners and thinkers.

Great marketing is achieved when complementary skills collide. Arrangers have the soft skills needed to find and bring those skill sets together, maximizing results.

3. Thinkers

Thinkers are all about the why. That team member who emails you a novel of detailed thoughts at 11 p.m.? That’s a thinker.

Thinkers need lots of information to make decisions. That said, they aren’t necessarily indecisive. Once their decision has been reached, you’d be wise to listen. The result of gathering a large volume of input and data typically results in great confidence in their decision making. Thinkers care deeply about doing work with purpose and are essential to quality work. Make sure you have a healthy dose of thinkers amongst your execution-focused team.

4. Doers

Doers are all about the what. They’re less concerned with making sure all the right people have been included, that the order of operations is correct, or that everything has been discussed thoroughly. Doers are centrally focused on one area: checking things off the list, as efficiently as they can.

Doers tend to have relentless personalities and are able to handle large quantities of work. This is less often the case with arrangers and thinkers, making doers a vital complement to those who are more conceptual. They also tend to be independent and self-motivated, keeping the end goal in mind but prioritizing and solving hurdles that enter their path. Every great marketing team has at least one doer.

Creating masterful marketing is a direct result of a healthy team dynamic. If you find a project struggling, you may not have the right combination of personalities working together. With the right mix, you’ll have a foundation to succeed.

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