Left Business, Right Marketing

by Eric Tsai

Dan Schawbel’s interview with Laura Ries reminded me of my own constant struggle between left and right brain. It’s true that left is more logical and analytical and right is visual and holistic.

left-and-right-brainI started out my career as a right brainer, always after creating visuals, communication designs, photography and art. I never thought I could fit or do well in a corporate environment until I was promoted to be part of a executive management team years ago.

During that time, I rapidly evolved into an extreme left brainer knowing I had to deliver the numbers and create value for the company.  Naturally, I empowered my team and even hired people to fill in my design duties so I can focus on leading the team. That was the first time I sat on the other side of the meeting table facing my design team, I was perceived as the corporate man.

Ultimately my experience as part of the management team and as part of the marketing/design team helped my left and right brain to communicate with each other. The product design were well received by the sales force and marketing campaigns were seamlessly integrated with the corporate objectives.  Sales were up and the company was growing with more successful products.

I’ve learned over the years the importance of communication in any environment. Not everyone will be able to communicate effectively, but one should focus on consistency and the right delivering methods for the optimal outcome.

Consistency is what comes to mind when the thought of a brand, a name or even a sound evokes. The delivering method is the vehicle in which the message can be effectively communicated to the maximum number of audience at any given moment.  It is what comes to mind when you hear Coke Cola, is it the red and white logo or the sizzling sound of bubbles? How about McDonald’s? Smell the fries or hear the “I’m loving it” music?  Can you sign Expedia dot com?  How about those annoying infomercials from HeadOn ‘apply directly to forehead‘ to that guy selling ShamWow or Slap Chop?

Whether you like it or not they made some kind of impression.

Further Reading

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  1. Chris Perry   •  

    This is a great article. I have actually done a number of research projects on left and right-brained students and professionals, and results always showed that individuals with a balance of both right and left brain thinking performed best overall regardless of their interests, careers, current positions etc.

    Being able to think in different ways and exercising both hemispheres of your brain will inevitably help you succeed in your career.

  2. Eric Tsai   •     Author

    Hi Chris, thanks for the comment.

    That’s why some people are cut out to be the CEO while others can’t stand working in the office and it has little to do with intelligent. I always go back to the example of why Bill Gates is the Chief Architect at Microsoft while Steve Ballmer is the actual CEO. They both know what each other bring to the table and provide the most value for the company.

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