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The CMO Files: Claudine Bianchi, CMO, Axceler

Get inside the mind of the world's top marketing professionals. In 20 questions we find out what they love most about their job, what their biggest achievements are... and what keeps them awake at night. Read 'The CMO Files'...

 

Name: Claudine Bianchi

Organisation: Axceler 

Job title: CMO

Location: Woburn, MA

 

(1) Where were you born and raised?

I was born in New York -- raised in Franklin Square which is about a mile away from the Belmont racetrack in Queens. That's the most recognizable landmark! I grew up in a 3 bedroom 1 1/2 bath house with my parents, my grandmother, three sisters and the cat.

(2) What was your first job?  

I worked in the mail room at Doubleday Book Company, opening and sorting mail -- 3600 letters a day. I developed a great cadence -- stab, rip, tear, open, sort -- always hit my quota. Which in hind-sight was probably not the best thing to do, as it did not necessarily ingratiate me with my co-workers who did it for a living!

(3) What was the first product you got really excited about?   

Windows 3.0 -- I was working on a PC and wasn't in love with DOS. WYSIWYG was music to my eyes.

(4) Who has been the biggest influence on your career?

Bill Bluestein, who I reported to at Forrester. He taught me how to communicate effectively regardless of the medium or audience. He was a terrific leader who encouraged taking risks. He died suddenly in 2001 at the age of 41 -- I try to emulate him in some way every day; I hope he is looking down and is proud.

(5) What has been your greatest achievement?

My children! Professionally, it's the culmination of so many small achievements that has gotten me to where I am today. I have a lot of great anecdotes but no one achievement stands so far above the rest. I think I'm still waiting for that defining event!

(6) What has been your biggest mistake?

Too many to count!  I have always thought that if given the same set of conditions, I'd make the same choices, so I try not to beat myself up or feel regret.  As long as I learn from them, I'm not afraid of making them.

(7) What is your greatest strength?

I listen intently.

(8) What is your biggest weakness?

Impatience. And good chocolate!

(9) What do you think is the aspect of your role most neglected by peers?   

The analytics. Too many marketers get wrapped up in brand -- at the end of the day, marketing is about the numbers, especially revenue.

(10) Which word or phrase is your mantra and which word or phrase makes you squirm?

Breathe -- it reminds me to slow down and think.

"It depends" as an answer.

(11) What makes you stressed?

Mediocrity. Accepting it, creating it. I'd rather fail brilliantly.

(12) What do you do to relax?

What's that? I'm a working Mom!

Watching and listening to the ocean will always put me in my happy place.

(13) What is your favourite song?

"Fields of Gold," by Sting. Whenever I hear it, it always puts me at the beach or on the sea.

(14) Which book taught you most?

7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey

(15) Do you have a team or sport that you follow?

The New England Patriots -- I love football!

(16) Which country would you like to work in?

Grand Cayman -- why not?

(17) Which company do you think has the best marketing?

Mercedes

(18) What do you love most about your job?

The people. Especially watching my team work together and grow.

(19) What is your favourite book?

The Poetry of Robert Frost

(20) What keeps you awake at night?

Remember, I'm a working mom -- when I go to sleep, I sleep!


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