Feeling underutilized in marketing role, what path should I take next?

I am currently in a digital marketing lead role within a major US corporation. I develop marketing strategies for clients, oversee content, SEO, client facing meetings, etc. I do a above average job and provide exceptional results for my clients businesses. However, now that I have a few case studies that show how I help my clients and have gotten some professional recommendations from clients in the industry, I feel that I have achieved all I can here, and will have no room for growth. The corporation I work for has a huge bureaucracy that has basically at every turn provided headwinds to my work ( go through 3 people to get approval, that work is not in our best practices policy, please provide evidence that this tactic works before we try it, obstructionist managers/data teams, poor decision making, bad org chart, etc.) I think the next logical step would be to start my own agency, but I had signed a noncompete with this company that would cover 1 year after I terminate my employment, so I feel that isn’t possible right now. I also feel like I have maxed out my skills when it comes to marketing in this field, so a change of pace might help with my personal growth.

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So with that in mind I would like to consider some major career transitions or even going back to school. I’ve realized in this latest role that I have 5 traits that have made me successful, do you have any ideas of careers that I can best be challenged and rewarded for having these 4 traits?

1. I ask very good questions. Often in client meetings I will have other team members ask their questions and get no where because they are either asking the wrong question for the problem that the client is having or they don’t have enough industry context to make the question concrete. Im always distilling questions to the root of the issue. Or I ask good fishing questions to get the client to talk about something that they may never have thought of before, but is very relevant to their issue.
2. I love finding signals in the noise. When possible I get access to the Corp’s data (very difficult to get) or find ways to collect it myself. I love looking through all the data, finding indicators, testing hypothesis and drawing conclusions that are most likely true.
3. I am scientific and love breaking problems down into their actionable parts. Many clients have very vague ideas or goals. I love breaking down these into their smaller parts and testing each component individually. I can be very creative with the solutions I find using this mindset.
4. I love learning and reading. I am a continuous learner, I hate stagnating, and always need to be challenged with a new problem. So am always reading about developments in my field and just general interdisciplinary knowledge.
5. Client obsessed. In many team meetings, our members propose random solutions that never really benefit the end-user significantly. I can see this right away as I always am thinking of problems from the mind of the consumer. Because most of my colleagues lack this they go down rabbit holes of changes that have a very low likelihood of success. See point 1 as well.

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I feel that I have done well in my current role due to my strengths in the 5 traits above. Few of my peers seem to have these traits, so I am thinking that I may be in the wrong field. Would consulting be a better fit? data science? product?

Or should I just lean into what I am currently doing as I seem to know that I have an edge? Build a small book of clients now in order to sustain me when I leave this role?



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