Roundup of a roundup: Advice from Leaders We Admire

Around here, First Round Review is one of our favorite sources for advice from leaders across industries. Think of it as that one person you go to for advice because they have all this great knowledge in their head– First Round unpacks those crucial insights from leaders and shares it with us.

Recently, they did a round-up of the “The 30 Best Pieces of Advice for Entrepreneurs in 2016” from some of the amazing people they interviewed in the past year. Many of these tips are important for the growing companies we serve, but below we pulled out our top four. Read on to find some great advice from leaders we admire.

  1. “Be bold. Be elegant.”
    Frederique Dame is a product leader at Uber and is no stranger to bold moves. When it comes to having a career and life that fulfill you, she gives this advice: Decide that no matter what happens, you will be okay. You have to practice this to be able to make bold decisions. On elegance she says, “To be elegant is to be deliberate, respond gracefully, take things lightly — to move through the world with positive purpose. It’s having a soft touch and tough resilience at the same time. And, in my experience, it’s an incredible secret weapon.”
  2. “Practice the observer effect.”
    James Everingham, Head of Engineering at Instagram, steps back and allows his team to brainstorm the path forward. As a leader, your team has a tendency to embrace any solution you offer. To encourage the most creative thinking at your company, tell your team what success looks like, and then step back and allow them to come up with a solution. You’ll find that the team you’ve assembled can come up with a better solution than you could have individually. You can apply this to big and small obstacles. Are you looking to cut time spent on employee scheduling? Looking for better communication between your team? Tell your staff the problem you need to solve and let them have a hand in crafting the solution.
  3. “Beat your competition by introducing unfamiliarity — a better mousetrap won’t work.”
    Bret Taylor was a leader on the team that co-created Google Maps. When it first launched their biggest issue to push out the competition was indifference. They knew they had the superior product, but getting people to switch from one app to another was the hardest part. To combat this, you need to help users see a “new world” rather than just new features. Show them why these new features matter in context.
  4. “Write down any question you hear from customers more than twice. That’ll feed your content marketing.”
    Content Marketing isn’t just a buzzword or something reserved for large companies. You can create excellent content marketing no matter your size, but regardless of your size, there are still some major problems Contently CEO Joe Coleman sees continually. Before you try and sprint down the content marketing path, you need to look at the data. Talk to those that work with your customers daily, mine whatever data you can, start small, and have clear objectives for content.

That’s just four of the amazing pieces of advice contained in First Round Review’s 2016 roundup. Read the full article here, reference these leader’s advice often, and charge ahead in your business boldly this year.