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Human Resources

Why CMOs are moving on when they should be stepping up

IbyIMD+ Published 31 August 2022 in Human Resources • 7 min read

As marketing leaders stay in their roles for shorter and shorter periods, turnover of CMOs is becoming an issue – but a shift in mindset could reverse that trend


Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) are moving on – and quickly. They may not yet be at the same level as Serie A bosses in Italy, who get the sack, on average, after just 35 matches but CMOs are looking more and more like the football managers of the C-suite, with the typical CMO, according to research from search consultant Spencer Stuart, now lasting only 40 months in the role – the lowest figure in at least a decade.

The situation on the ground could be even more concerning. As the research points out, the data on mean CMO tenure is skewed by a small number of long-serving executives. Median tenure for CMOs has now fallen to just 25 months. In other words, newly appointed CMOs may have as little as two years to make an impact. (CEOs, by the way, get much longer to prove themselves; Spencer Stuart puts their…

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