B2B Reads: Empathetic Leadership, Reemerging Paper Catalogs, and Purposeful Work


In addition to our Sunday App of the Week feature, we also summarize some of our favorite B2B sales & marketing posts from around the web each week. We’ll miss a ton of great stuff, so if you found something you think is worth sharing please add it to the comments below.

10 Characteristics of Great Sales Managers
In this post, Anthony Iannarino offers ten characteristics that many great sales managers share, including knowing each individual on their team, using positive accountability, and transferring their relevant experience. Iannarino digs into each characteristic and offers a high-level overview of what each trait is and why it should be important to a successful sales manager.

How Paper Catalogs Remain Relevant in a Digital Age
In this article, Jonathan Z. Zhang explores the reemerging relevancy of paper catalogs, and how this often forgotten strategy can help many different types of businesses stand out in a highly crowded digital marketing environment. Zhang offers that by sending catalogs to the right customers, they “can effectively mimic stores’ sensory experiences to enhance customer affinity.”

5 Questions to Improve Your Leadership Effectiveness
In this blog post, Gordon Tredgold outlines five important questions for effective leaders to continually ask themselves. He notes that being an effective leaders “starts with asking the right questions about your current leadership style and effectiveness as a leader.”

How Small Moments Of Praise Make a Big Difference
Stephen Schramm here, drawing on psychology research, writes on the importance and power of praise in building culture and relationships. Schramm emphasizes the important of expressing gratitude, often just in small ways, as many can simply focus on only the negative criticism of their work or performance.

POV: 5 steps to achieve better sales and marketing alignment
Joe Cumello in this article interrogates “the most clichéd (but somewhat accurate) statement […] that sales and marketing are ‘not on the same page.'” In an effort to understand this relationship more, Cumello travels through five steps in reimagining how sales and marketing might work together to create more synergy.

4 scientific reasons why employees love empathetic leaders
In this blog post, Larae Quy uses her experience as an FBI agent to illustrate the role that empathy plays in leadership and strategy. In a time of unprecedented stress, Quy underscores how vital empathy and mutual understanding at work is for employee wellbeing. Using data from studies conducted at workplaces, Quy draws conclusions about some of the roadblocks and negative influences affecting empathy from leadership at work.

How To Communicate Effectively At Work
In this article, David Burkus provides a detailed guide to the best practices for communicating effectively at work. As more work is being done remotely and asynchronously, Burkus offers tips and advice for both asynchronous and synchronous work. He writes: “Effective communication isn’t one problem to solve. It’s two. There’s effective asynchronous communication and effective synchronous communication. And the rules for each vary just like the method of communication varies.”

Pay Attention To What We Say, Not How We Execute…
David Brock in this blog post offers his honest observations surrounding the large gap between many companys’ declarations and their execution. He cites messy, redundant, and off-topic outreach as common pitfalls of organizations that “talk the talk” but cannot execute on their self-proclaimed expertise.

3 Ways Companies Make Work Purposeful
In this article, Michael Mankins, Eric Garton, and Dan Schwartz offer key insights into how a company can make work more purposeful, and in turn, retain more employees. The authors offer that “companies are trying to retain employees through better pay, flexible working conditions, and emphasis on the corporate mission. These are not proving successful because the real problem is people’s engagement with the work they actually do.” So, additional avenues of creating meaningful work emerge: “make the work itself more interesting, link the individual’s work to the mission, and build learning into that work.”

The selfish benefit of selflessness
Jim VandeHei in this post illustrates how selfless leaders ultimately create longer-lasting relationships and better work environments. He cites a trend of “wild CEOs with cutthroat cultures who get featured in books or HBO shows,” and submits that “the most successful — and happy — leaders we know realize their own selfish ambitions by genuinely serving others.”