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Warning Signs you Should Consider a Fractional CMO versus a Full-time CMO

  • Are you having a hard time attracting the right talent for your Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) role?
  • Is your company growing, but its growth pattern is flat, sporadic, and revenue is unpredictable?
  • Are you extremely cost-conscious and finding that your offered salary is below “market rate”?
  • Do you not have a marketing team, plan, or budget?
  • Do you not know where your leads are coming from and how and where to foster more?
  • Does the thought of “marketing” make you feel lost, overwhelmed, and not sure where to start?
  • Would your existing team be able to capitalize very quickly on this strategic hire, or do you have a little more work to ensure maximum ROI?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, it may be time to rethink your hiring strategy.

Most people and companies are hardwired to think they need a full-time resource to fill strategic gaps. Not only is this thinking archaic but it’s wrong. While there are many situations where a full-time resource makes sense, it doesn’t mean this should be the kneejerk reaction.

Fractional and interim executive models exist for a reason. Namely, they maximize flexibility for both the employer and service provider. Oftentimes, small and medium organizations could benefit from a lightweight, low-cost engagement that will put them in a better position to maximize the output of a full-time resource (i.e. a fractional worker).  

Here are a few of the benefits accrued from hiring a fractional worker…

  • Palatable and flexible cost structure
  • Open-ended and or time-line driven engagement
  • Access to expertise that would otherwise be cost-prohibitive
  • Outside perspective and expertise, versus an internal and myopic one
  • Ability to align internal resources with the company mission before moving towards a full-time hire
  • Create the infrastructure needed to ensure a full-time hires ability to succeed is increased tenfold

If either the benefits or warning signs resonated with you, it may be time to take a pause, reevaluate your strategy, and see if a fractional worker makes sense to engage.


Article by:

Beau Billington- the founder of the Free Agent, an executive headhunting and consulting company immersed in the strategic-layer of the Gig Economy.

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