The realities of COVID-19 have changed the way of life and work for many of us. Like me, you’re probably working to maintain normalcy in the new WFH world. You’re rethinking strategies around pipeline generation. You’re dealing with canceled meetings and events. And you’re trying to keep a healthy home life intact.

Traditionally, I send this newsletter out on the third Sunday of every month. Unfortunately, with the times being what they are, this month’s newsletter got a tad delayed. It’s not an excuse, but an admission of the climate we’re all in.

But I want to keep this community going strong, especially in these difficult times.

As a leader, I always want to be transparent with my team and you. Now more than ever. And, that’s what today’s newsletter is all about: How to be a better leader, a better mentor, and a better advocate.

So I’ll start with a question:

Who helped you to become the leader you are today?

For me, it wasn’t a single person. But a series of individuals: The teachers that turned my interest in design into a love of technology, the coworkers that drove me to take risks at companies like Adobe and Salesforce, the managers who challenged my assumptions and pushed me further than I ever thought I could go.

And now, I get to be part of that growth journey for other marketers in a big way.

Team building is an important part of my job.

And time and time again, I’ve found that the key to building and expanding any highly successful marketing team is a strong marketing strategy. Unfortunately, many leaders struggle to align their marketing strategy with a comprehensive team and hiring plan.

From my own experience, the trouble happens when marketing is only measured on overall pipeline goals – without creating individual metrics that help inspire the teams and people that make up marketing. This makes it difficult for marketers to plan their activities and see the impact those activities have on achieving the overall goal.

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But giving your team the tools to align with the bigger picture is a critical motivator.

That’s why I’m so excited about the latest addition to the Drift library: Winning As a Marketing Leader: How To Design, Hire & Inspire High-Performance Marketing Teams.

Written in collaboration with The Predictive Index and The Connective Good, this book is a complete guide to creating and retaining high-performance marketing teams. It also offers extensive insight into aligning goals with different members of the marketing organization.

As the experts in talent optimization, The Predictive Index brings unparalleled expertise in building strong teams, while The Connective Good offers a unique perspective from years in the marketing recruitment industry. Coupled with Drift’s marketing playbook and the same tactical templates we use as part of our own talent strategy, this book is the ultimate masterclass for leaders looking to onboard and inspire top talent.

Now, keep scrolling for more ideas on how to help your team grow 👇

Getting marketing meetings right [Forbes]

I want to start a movement. It’s called #NoMoreBadMeetings. Dump them. Cancel them. Stop inviting me to them.

Meetings run my world. Which means I have little patience for meetings that go nowhere. That’s why this headline from Forbes caught my eye. The best part? It’s written by Udi Ledergor, the CMO of Gong, one of my favorite marketing teams in tech right now.

While Udi acknowledges that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for team meetings, there are steps you can take to avoid turning good meetings bad. Check out Gong’s four-step agenda here. (David Cancel also tackles a similar topic on what does and doesn’t require a meeting.)

The great marketing debate: hard vs. soft skills [MarTech Today] 

Last month, a LinkedIn post sparked a fierce debate across the marketing world. The argument: What’s more important, soft skills like creative thinking or hard skills like MarTech knowledge?

The author said soft skills. Many in the MarTech field naturally argued the latter.

This article from MarTech Today asked: Why not both?

Here’s my take, similar to the article’s stance: Whether you’re a generalist, specialist, technologist, or something in between, it’s important to always be a constant learning machine. Absorb what you can, but also learn how to work with the different skillsets and backgrounds on your team.

Today’s most successful CMOs must use both the left and right side brain of marketing, especially in the boardroom. They must spearhead creative innovation and draw a line back to revenue for all activities and initiatives. Being able to speak confidently about how marketing is impacting the bottom line is a critical skill every CMO should master.

The #1 trait Warren Buffet looks for when hiring talent [Inc]

There are a lot of qualities to consider when hiring for a leadership position. But according to Warren Buffet, there’s only one that makes or breaks his hiring decisions: Integrity.

Integrity is key to building trust. As a CMO, I know I can’t do it all. I trust my managers and leaders to create an environment that reflects the vision we’ve set together.

How does integrity play into your hiring process? Are you creating an environment that encourages and celebrates trust? Feel free to send me a note on LinkedIn, tweet to @triciagellman, or reply to this email.

Enjoy the rest of your March.


(P.S. How can CMOs best communicate their team’s success and strategies at the c-suite level? Check our recent collaboration with G2 and Heinz Marketing on marketing’s role in the boardroom.)

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