Stepping Into the Role of Managing Director

Product Managers in IMC and group of content creators

Being the Managing Director in Integrated Marketing Communications is a daunting task, one that is made even more challenging when the responsibilities of this role is made unclear. 3 weeks in, I have learned the ropes of this position and am here to share them with you!

Post created by: Rebecca Andrews Spring 2023,  AIMC


From Content Creator to Product Manager, I have spent a little over 6 months as a cog in the machine that is Integrated Marketing Communication. In the next 3 months, I will be tackling a new role in IMC as Managing Director. Being a Managing Director has been a position on the Executive Team that has seemed to elude many students. For the first 2 weeks of being in this role, I was very lost myself, not knowing which duties fell into my lap and which duties were my peers. However, from listening to my past peers, current peers, and professor I have begun to define my responsibilities as Managing Director.

Key takeaways from this article

Marketing Objectives

Stepping into this role the only thing I was clear about was that it was my job to make sure that the marketing objectives of our internal and external clients were met. That means having a meeting with the clients and making sure their objectives are concise and clear in their creative strategies. What this translates to, is learning how to be a middleman between your Content Creators/Product Managers and your clients. It’s learning how to give your creatives enough room to create while also making sure they fulfill the needs of the client. While I haven’t had the opportunity to fulfill this task yet, I have picked up some tips along the way I plan on implementing. Including not waiting for the perfect product. That is something that I have learned from the Agile methodology. It is better to have small phases of continuous improvement than it is to wait for the perfect product idea that may never come around. I have also learned to not micromanage my creatives. This is something I caught myself actively having to change as a Product Manager. Having gone through the role as Content Creator, I knew how exciting IMC is, which sometimes translated into me having a tighter grip on my content creators than I should have had. Once I let go of that grip, they felt comfortable enough to take our product in a different direction that aligned with their creative styling. Creating a product that was undoubtedly better. Tied in with that, as a Managing Director you are overseeing the big picture, so it is your job to leave room for new and innovative ideas.

One Time

As the first agile sprint was underway, I quickly realized that another one of my duties as Managing Director is to guide teams in staying as close to our scrum sprint dates as possible. In IMC, teams learn that not doing work one day can quickly lead to offsetting the two-week sprint. To help teams stay on the scrum sprint deadlines our Director of Operations created this handy calendar that is shared with our teams. However, if you have been a content creator, you know how overwhelming it can be. This is why I am going to implement weekly reminders in the general IMC Teams channel to create a trigger for content creators. I did that at the end of the R&D sprint and I got feedback from content creators that seeing that notification gave them the trigger they needed to take action!

Sprint calendar


As you can imagine in a class called Integrated Marketing Communications, one of our areas of focus is creating integration. As Managing Director, I am focused on breaking up the silos that are naturally created when teams are working individually on their products. To do this, I am creating transparency among teams. Allowing them to see what other teams are working on allows them to integrate that team’s media into their own as they are building. I am using an IMC Product Ideas Workbook that was created by the Winter 2023 Executive Team as a way for teams to share what they are creating.

IMC product ideas workbook

When it comes to integration it is also really important that teams are serving all of the client's target audience and social media channels. Using the IMC Product Ideas Workbook, I created a chart that helped us to map out teams’ audience and distribution channels. As you can see most of our target audiences are being targeted this quarter however with many alumni events coming up in Spring, it’s important to our client that this audience be served. This is where it’s important to learn how to balance the needs of your client while allowing your team creative freedom.

Target audience & social media channel integration table

Solve Blockers

            The last job that I am consistently working on as Managing Director is solving blockers. Mainly focusing on Product Manager's blockers however can also mean solving Content Creator's blockers as well. During our standups in class, I have begun to take notes of the Product Manager's blockers so that I can help them in solving those blockers outside of class. I also take note of their blockers during our weekly meeting times. I have also realized that I should take it upon myself to reach out to Product Managers individually and ask them what their blockers are. From running a team, in the last quarter,  I noticed that it was easier for my teammates to share their blockers when we were in a one-on-one environment. It can be intimidating for them and Product Managers to share that their real blockers are when they are listening to other people not have any blockers. So far this quarter I have even had a Product Manager not share the full extent of their team's lack of incentive to get started because they heard another Product Manager talk about how amazing their team was doing.

In conclusion, stepping into the role of Managing Director came with a few obstacles. But with the guidance of my predecessors and team members, I have learned my responsibilities and put them into action. The key is to focus on fulfilling client objectives, keeping the IMC team on track with scrum dates, product integration, and solving blockers. With a solid outline in place, the next three months will be an exciting time to watch the progress unfold. Be sure to hit the subscribe button to stay up to date on the journey ahead