This is crazy to me. How can the marketing department not be considered an integral part of the company leadership? In my opinion (and yes, I am a marketer), marketing should be at the center of all organizations.
Think about this for a minute. If you strip away every department and function from a company, what ultimately drives the business? Customers. Customers drive sales. And sales, hopefully, lead to profits. And profits create value, which leads to higher stock prices.
So without customers, there would be no company. And without marketing, there would be no customers.
If I could wave a magic wand and change how companies are structured, I would use the fundamentals of marketing (the Four Ps plus one) as the departmental backbone:
1. PRODUCT – research & development
2. PRICE – finance
3. PLACE – operations and logistics
4. PROMOTION – sales, marketing & information technology
5. PEOPLE – administrative and human resources
If companies used marketing as the basis of their organizational structure, customers would naturally be the focus of each department. This, I believe, is how it should be since customers are ultimately the reason for a company’s existence.