How 2B Fearless with Fearless 50 Member, Enrico de Leon

Marketo Employee

In this edition of the How 2B Fearless series, we sat down with @Enrico_de_Leon, who is Associate Director of Marketing Operations at AMRI. He is also a part of the 2020 Marketo Champion class. Enrico shares what being a fearless marketer means for him and what it has meant for his career.

 

What does fearless marketing mean to you?

Fearless marketing is leveraging data and experience to make decisions in ever-changing situations. This attention to data and experience prevents carelessness and helps with overcoming failure. In my experience, failure under this approach allows one to fine-tune quickly and often uncovers additional parameters on which to improve – leading to a better end result.

 

Who is a fearless marketer you look up to and why?

Many individuals have inspired me throughout my marketing career. I’ll explain why/how fearless marketers inspire me:

  • They stand their ground in the face of professional adversity
  • They are objective in their evaluation of the strategy
  • They are confident, yet humble enough to admit fault
  • They are not afraid of working through obstacles

 

Based on those characteristics, the fearless marketer(s) I look up to is my team – who persistently supports each other in organizational success and individual growth.

My team (Kerry Hutchings, Corie Rowe, Valerie Keays) is a prime example of a miniscule group tasked with gargantuan KPIs (with the aspirations to match). I’ve often witnessed each team member tackle the duties often undertaken by entire departments – often through creativity, resolve, and downright gutsiness to make things work at an optimal level. The icing on the cake is each member’s ability to advise/support, regardless of the skillset or job level of the people involved.

 

How did your career start out in marketing?

By accident. I had started my career as a technical media specialist (or graphic designer) and was quickly promoted to marketing manager by way of necessity and because of my aptitude. I learned every facet of marketing by virtue of being a one-person department – tradeshows, ad design, ad purchasing and strategy.

A short time later, I had taught myself much of the administrative role in our CRM, so when the time came for a new CRM and MAP, I was part of the team that implemented the systems. This was the start of my affinity to Marketo and martech.


How did you get to the point you are at in your career today?

An unwavering adherence to self-flagellation.

Honestly, by listening (and realizing that someone is also listening to you). Throughout the workday, there are numerous self-coaching moments that can be learned if you’re really paying attention.

Earlier in my career, I had experienced pockets of weak leadership and toxic culture. As draining and debilitating as it was, I experienced growth by keeping my head down and powering through. The turning point of my career was the realization that good can be found in every scenario and person. When I chose to work with the positives, I was able to break through my own psychological stranglehold.

Eventually, I made the decision to walk away and dive head-first into a more defined Marketing Operations role. Throughout this time, I had become deeply involved with the Marketo community, as well as building several relationships with other marketing leaders – helping me reset my professional vision.


What have you learned from other members of the Fearless 50?

The best piece of advice I’ve been given by other Fearless 50 members is to put myself out there. This helps with overcoming self-doubt and imposter syndrome by engaging with the broader marketing community. These interactions reinforce my expertise by learning from multiple experiences and perspectives.


What are three pieces of advice you would give to the next generation of fearless marketers?

  1. Humbly Hustle.
    The moments outside of our job descriptions yield the most insight. In order to evolve, we have to continually acquire data and experience (both professionally and personally). This can come in the form of reading, networking, MUGs, community. I think Nick Offerman put it best – don’t envision yourself as a master of {x}, consider it a condition of eternal studenthood.
  2. Speak Up.
    This might be obvious, but it is multi-pronged. Don’t be afraid to ask questions (you’ll learn more). Don’t be afraid to share your expertise (you’ll teach someone something). Don’t be afraid to disagree and engage in discourse (many will learn, many will teach).

    Without getting too specific, my organization leans on me to provide marketing ops expertise in order to facilitate marketing/sales alignment. Admittedly, I do NOT enjoy public speaking, so I approach presentations with a bit of apprehension. It’s one thing to postulate on best practices, but it’s a different game when you factor in questions or push-back on recommended actions.

    Rather than viewing the Q&A as a matter of contention, I gather valuable insight from others while expressing the strategy from my perspective. Overall, the exercise is beneficial for the company since both my audience and I are able to simultaneously teach and learn about each other’s approaches.
  3. Pay It Forward.
    I have grown professionally thanks to the generosity of the MKTGNation and have lost count of the number of times an Expert, Champ, Fearless50er, or fellow marketer has helped me in my career.

    Whether to MKTGNation, your MUG, your company/team, your family, or your neighborhood, the act of giving yields personal benefit. I’ve found that training others on marketing/sales alignment, helping new Marketo users, and brainstorming with other MUG members broadens my knowledge of Marketo and marketing. More importantly, it improves the community by developing better marketers.

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Want to be featured in the next How 2B Fearless edition, or know someone who might be a perfect fit? Let us know in the comments!

6 Comments
Level 5 - Champion Alumni

Great to learn more about you Enrico. Thanks for sharing.

Level 2 - Champion

I'm looking forward to hearing everyone else's stories and experiences! If you have anything, share it in the comments!

Nice to know you. 🙂 

Level 5 - Champion

I love what you said about small, but mighty teams, @Enrico_de_Leon! We also have a small team and it's amazing what just a few people can accomplish to run MOPs across an organization. I think it's all really about managing priorities and deciding when the right time is tackle additional projects. We can't do it all, but taking it piece by piece we can accomplish incredible things!

Champion Moderator

Rules to live by can be taken by nearly every answer: "Humbly Hustle" "Listen" "Pay it Forward" "Leverage data to make decisions"

 

Doing things the "right way" pays off. Congrats on being fearless, my friend.

I think the piece of advice I hear the most is "put yourself out there." Thanks for sharing and reminding us of this!