Not Invented Here comic strip for 12/2/2009
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Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Art: She quit. Deborah quit.
Owen: Who? Oh. Oh! The marketer! Right.

Art: Yes. The marketer. Our fourth marketer in two years. And I'm beginning to realize all their departures have something in common. Something in this room. You.
Owen: Me?!

Art: You. They all said they got no cooperation from the product team.
Owen: Well it's hard to cooperate when they keep changing. There's a new one every six months, you know.


This week's strips (and next) illustrate my internal conflict where it comes to marketing. Back when I was a developer they were always poking around, making feature suggestions that generally made my life more difficult. When I became a program manager I spent more time with them, going back and forth between my vision for what we were building and what they thought customers wanted (or what they thought customers thought they wanted). And in my last job in the software industry, as an executive speechwriter, I had to navigate through all the flotsam and jetsam of corporate messaging. It was truly frustrating.

Meanwhile I was spinning up my own business with a publishing arm, a line of merchandise, and a bustling advertising unit. I got very good at talking about what we do, and even helping our sponsors with their campaigns. One day I woke up and said to my wife, "I think I'm a marketer". And she replied, "Well, duh".

So maybe we all become what we fear the most.