I was 5 years old when the first Godfather movie hit the theaters, and though I didn’t see Parts 1 and 2 until I was a teenager, I was acutely aware of their cultural impact that extended far beyond its cinematic brilliance.
When Hollywood romanticized the Sicilian Mob, they de-emphasized their criminal business enterprises in favor of the social aspects inherent in the family dynamic. Clearly, Don Corleone and his two most passionate sons, Michael and Sonny, were the focal points of the movie and were the most visible and charismatic faces of their organization. However, while these focal leaders clearly dictated the fortunes of the family, they were by no means autocrats. A non-Italian outsider rose through the ranks and he served a high-level combined role of both wise counsel and expert facilitator, working almost exclusively out of the limelight. The term “Consigliere” wasn’t coined by The Godfather, but it was greatly popularized by it, and the term (minus some of its seediness) leached itself into greater society.
A more modern and hands-on manifestation of the Consigliere could be seen in the Winston Wolf character in Pulp Fiction. Unlike Tom Hagen, the “Wolf” is very much a freelancer and is only beholden to his clients and customers. However, the “Wolf” can walk into any situation no matter how dire, make quick assessments as to people and process, and generate most excellent results (before vanishing never to be seen again).
Also, not to be forgotten are the linguistic similarities between the words “consigliere” and “concierge”. Both roles actually contain many of the same duties. However, where the concierge merely does the bidding of the people he/she is servicing, the consigliere actually seeks out the high-level opportunities, makes the necessary connections, and facilitates the actions necessary that results in gain for his employer / client.
So, in a nutshell, my role at 3Q Digital is evolving beyond Account Management. Yes, I still manage accounts. Yes, I’m still the in-house Marin Maverick. However, I’ll also be brought into the sorts of unique situations that are arising more frequently as our organization scales. You won’t see me on sales calls, nor will I be speaking at search conferences (though you might find me at the bar). My expanded role might involve mentoring / teaching; it might involve filling a knowledge or experience gap either internally or externally; or it even might involve laying down the heavy funk when the situation demands it. I’ve done all of the above before and I expect to do much more of this in the future.