Just as our promotion checklist suggests, the ability to move fast is absolutely essential if you want to build your career here at Drift.

This goes back to forgetting about our preconceived notions and being able to learn faster than the competition. It’s not an ego-trip or a vanity thing, but rather a fundamental principle in the way that our marketing team operates.

We’re not worried about failing, because just as Molly Graham taught us, “It’s not really a failure if you learn in the process of trying.”

Of course, not every new tactic will be more successful than the last. But since we make sure to learn from each experiment, at least we won’t repeat the same mistakes again.

That’s why an essential part of the learning process is documenting it. After a product launch Dan would write an “after action report” to document how the launch went and specifically call out mistakes or issues.

Each month’s after action report is reviewed early in the preparation process for the next launch. That way the marketing team would never make the same mistake twice.

Every launch will have problems. Some small, some large. So taking that report and specifically calling out the issues will force your team to correct their mistakes and get better in time for the next launch.

This process of putting failures under a microscope and examining them applies to every area of marketing, not just product launches. From website design to demand generation — if we don’t properly assess ourselves, how are we supposed to get better?

Now, here’s the thing. When taking this approach, you need to find balance. Your team can’t write an after action report for everything you do in marketing. That’s unproductive. The most important part is that your marketing team adopts the mentality. This must become part of your culture: “A bunch of things went well, but here’s how we can improve next time.”

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