General Electric long ago created standard procedure and central reservoirs of expertise for functions like HR and finance but marketing practices varied by product line, unit or region. From late 2008 through mid 2009 we convened about 30 of our best marketers to develop new standards for our functions. We learned that that regardless of industry or region, they were struggling with the same issues yet were virtually unaware of one another's existence.
So we assigned teams of like minded subject matter experts to define the skills we needed to master. They organized eight disciplines into two groups; go to market activities and commercial essentials. To our knowledge, no other company had pulled these disciplines into one framework along with detailed definitions of success. We set out to make sure that at least one business could be considered an expert in each category.