You know, I've been thinking a lot about a session I attended at shop.org (I'll comment on the actual session later). While all the marketing sessions were full of tingly excitement and buzzwords, I wanted to get down in the weeds a little more. That's right, rather than talk about ideas and theories, I wanted to talk about the issues surrounding execution. I went to a session that was featuring...operations.
A lot of my marketing compatriots passed on this session. That's because a lot of my marketing compatriots are kinda dumb. They're so in love with ideas (especially their own), that they fail to realize (or simply just ignore) the fact that someone needs to implement their visions of glory.
It's a critical mistake that marketers and (especially) senior executives often make - they don't consider the complexities of operations when devising a plan. They figure "we'll think of something." Of course, that lays the foundation of a wonderful relationship between marketing and operations.
There is a clear road between a marketing idea and a successful marketing idea - that road is called operations. Not involving your operations team in planning is a great way to stick a giant pothole in the road.
It's not only important to tell them what your plan is, but to explain why you're approaching it the way your are. By opening yourself up to the people who are responsible for executing your grand vision, you lay the opportunity for everyone to pull in the same direction. Better yet, your operations team can come up with solutions to issues that may otherwise drag down and kill your project. Operations folks (and their IT brethren) love a detailed project plan. By having them involved in the process before finalizing the plan, you'll come up with a plan that not only contains (most of, at least) your vision.