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  • Writer's picture Scott Fitzgibbon

MOS2018: The Squeezed Middle

The 2018 Marketing Optimism Survey has revealed that the most optimistic positions within companies are those at either end of the seniority spectrum.

With many junior level positions being highly enthusiastic about their goals and the year ahead. Alongside senior positions, CEOs and Managing Directors driven by the excitement of the challenges and different approaches they may undertake to achieve their company goals.

Understandably with these groups approaching 2018 in a positive position, they all stated that they expected to look back on 2018 with a huge sense of pride.

However in the middle, the responses from management level respondents paint a slightly different picture. Although as a group they remain positive about their goals and confident of meeting these.

Their common challenges move away from being idealistic, ambition led or purpose driven. The challenges are more born out of frustration around elements such as fighting for budgets, challenging the internal structure, influencing top level strategy, and avoiding office politics.

In comparison to 2017, the optimism levels for management positions remain the same for 2018. This repeat probably aids the feeling that being in the middle becomes more about meeting objectives and returning on investment. Compared to other job levels that focus on Innovation, new solutions or new customers.

With the premise of a different challenge or work life balance, there has been a noticeable increase in management level people taking or considering the “Leap”.

These Leapers are looking to start up their own companies or becoming self-employed, with the ambition of working on personally relevant or different challenges. With a rise in the beginning of more companies and individual consultants to help corporate professionals escape their 9 to 5 jobs and look towards and brighter future.


"The type of people approaching me to are typically aged between 30-45. They are not director level and neither are they junior. They are, as revealed in the survey, in the middle. They have lots of frustrations around working hours, poor management and even negative impacts on their health. They all share a burning desire to make an impact and be in control of their own destiny. They are, in many ways, ahead of the curve as job creation trends shift towards freelancing and flexibility." Mark Firth, Escaping 9 to 5


The overriding feeling from those in middle management is that there remain excited about new challenges but are hoping for more change and to be noticed for it. If not there will always be alternatives around the corner.

Further reading

To find out more about escaping 9 to 5 visit

To find out more about Leapers visit

#marketing #MOS2018 #Optimism #business #owners #leapers

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