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  1. 1. The marketing forum made me realize that even though marketing is a department unto itself in most corporations its activities take it across all facets of the institution. This is a shift from the traditional way of segmenting each department roles unto itself, as we can attest from the concert experience, so as to efficiently and effectively strategize the different facets of the team or company to achieve their goals. Marketing’s roles are enmeshed with the other departments. It has become continually necessary for the marketing team to “know themselves” (internal environment), realizing the capacity of the other departments and how well they can harness these potentials to meet their strategy, keeping in line with the corporation’s vision and mission. We needed first to identify what the product is, that is, we needed to organize the first ever medical marketing forum to be held by the Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health. The standards should be high enough to exceed expectations, and hopefully to impress not just our teachers but also our target market – the various health care and medical professionals. This event was to set the bar for all the succeeding batches. Free reign forum was exhibit in that we were allowed to come up with our own themes and strategies. Thus, we concentrated on the things that we foresaw were on the rising trend in the medical business. This was done by asking our teachers and peers and observing the current events and the practices of the health business. The topic should also be something that should contribute heavily to our knowledge and practice as future doctors. Knowing our product, who our target market was, and after we establish the success parameters to it (finished tasks on time per group, number of attendees, favorable response and feedback, etc) we debated on the strategies that we needed to do to achieve this. It was a tiring endeavor as each group dynamics were different and we each had to adjust working with a variety of personalities for this major-scale project. This is facilitated by continuing communication, transparency and a supportive encouraging culture. <br />The second thing I realized is the importance of continuous feedback – from your target market, from your peers/ competitors – as a measurement of present status in achieving our goals and strategies. We need to be up-to-date, employing a little precognition or forecasting on our part, so as to realize on which areas limit us, what other facets of the job needs to be improved/ dropped/ changed/ or remodeled, to be able to respond to it as early as possible. No matter how good we plan, there will always be something that will go wrong. And the ability of the team to excellently respond to this (i.e. at least 3 contingency plans) at the best possible time reflects a good marketing team in the making. For the forum, we had to have a clear cut schedule for regular meetings. This was so difficult for us since we had to find a common time for all groups to attend or at least be represented. Further, we were not all sharing the same rotation schedules and some had to commute from far away just to be at meetings. Each small group was assigned a particular task to fulfill for the forum, and within each small group was a point person to represent the team. In a way, this was a good chance for the whole group to be aware of what has been accomplished so far and what else needs to be done as the point person could not always be there. In addition, these regular weekly meetings allowed us to gauge ourselves and plan for possible contingencies. Like for example, a group could not find a speaker yet the promotions team as well as the marketing and finance teams needed the temporary line up for them to carry out their roles at least 1 month prior to the event. But we needed to make a way to achieve our roles with this drawback.<br />For the marketing forum I participated in finding sponsors and as a member of the finance committee, as an usherette facilitating the audience throughout and the flow of the program, participating in getting feedback for the event, and thanking the participants after – distributing freebies, thank you cards, etc. I was a finance officer of my organization in college before and we organized events such as this. This experience however allowed me to appreciate the interrelatedness of everyone and their value to the team project at a larger, less familiar field for me. As before when my target market only involved students, now we needed to be more professional as we were to interact with our mentors, invited speakers from outside and other more prominent people unique to their field. This called for a totally different approach. As a finance team member, we had to market the idea of the forum to possible sponsors and further exceeding their expectations during the event. I find that my roles really made me part of the whole team effort, albeit how small it was. We had a couple of areas to improve indeed. But it really made me feel proud of being part of the team when at the end of the program we were praised for this small victory. The forum provided me with the opportunity to carry out the theoretical application of the things we learned and it is in the actualization of this that I revel in. <br />Hannah Doromal<br />MDMBA 070071<br />