Friday, August 15, 2008

Marketing - "Don't Let School Interfere With Your Education"

Academia Has It Place, But An "Advanced Degree" of Life Experience Is More Important

By David Miranda

Imagine attending an elite music school to study piano and for four years you learn everything there is to know about the instrument - except playing it. Upon graduation, with a "piano" degree in hand, you apply to a symphony orchestra for employment as a concert pianist. Your impressive credentials get you an interview at which you are asked to play. You respond that you have never played a single note.

This, of course, is an absurd example to make a point, but the point is important to make - school is important, but experience is critical in applying the academics.

In marketing today, it is difficult to find practictioners who have not earned undergraduate or post-graduate degrees in business or marketing. The difference between those that just have jobs and those that excel at their jobs, however, can be attributed to experience - learning in real world situations - and applying that key learning in real world situations.

In marketing, there is no such thing as doing things "by the book". In fact, there is no book on how to succeed in a highly competitive marketplace. Some people might encourage others to "think outside the box", but there is no box. That's why they call it thinking.

When someone asked a great musician on the eve of his concert in New York, "How do you get to Carnegie Hall?" He quickly replied, "Practice, practice, practice".

Don't let school interfere with your education. "Practice, practice, practice" what you have learned - in school and in real life.