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November 14, 2012
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The Leaderboard 
  • Petraeus, Kubasik and the perils of narcissism
    Ex-CIA chief Gen. David Petraeus and ousted Lockheed Martin executive Christopher Kubasik are just the latest in a long line of leaders to be brought down by their libidos, writes Jeffrey Pfeffer. That's in part a side effect of the narcissistic, aggressively egotistical traits we prize -- often with good reason -- in top executives, Pfeffer writes. "[W]e are choosing more narcissist leaders and the misbehavior is not just the consequence of power but also of excessive narcissism," he explains. Harvard Business Review online/HBR Blog Network (11/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Sales Strategies 
  • Why you must eliminate the gap between sales and marketing
    Sales and marketing need to work together to create the best possible experience for customers, writes Steve McKee. "If you have a divide between sales and marketing, bridge it," he writes. "Cross-train them, ensure that they have access to the same data, make them responsible for each others' metrics, and set expectations regarding collaboration." Bloomberg Businessweek (11/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • The right way to do content marketing
    Much of the marketing material produced by companies focuses on late-stage buyers, but content marketing should cater to consumers throughout the buying process, writes Drew Zarges. "By gaining access early, you can help establish their goals and selection criteria," he writes. "You also gain credibility as a trusted resource -- you've shown you understand their problems." Sales Benchmark Index/Sales Force Effectiveness Blog (11/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • How to create a successful compensation strategy
    The most effective sales-compensation plans are designed to accomplish specific goals, such as to encourage representatives to sell more of a certain product or service, writes Chris Simone of Treeline. It's important to communicate with your sales force about the plan and to avoid making it too complicated. "If the plan is too granular or complex, then it will fail to affect behavior (which is the primary purpose of the plan)," he writes. ERE.net (11/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Daily Data Points 
  • CEOs warn of layoffs if America goes over the "fiscal cliff"
    Companies will be forced to make cutbacks, reduce investments and hand out pink slips if lawmakers fail to find a quick solution to America's fiscal problems, CEOs warn. Reduced spending will mean slower economic growth, with military contractors and health care companies likely to be hardest hit. "The American people are going to suffer, because we'll lay them off," warns Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini. The Wall Street Journal (11/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Understanding the Sales Force with Dave Kurlan 
  • Did Obama make salespeople look bad?
      
    A series of remarks by President Barack Obama and his campaign about Mitt Romney could be construed as painting salespeople in a negative light, writes Dave Kurlan. The remarks came at an inopportune time for those in the profession who are attempting to promote integrity in sales. One key lesson from the remarks is that it's important to be respectful toward your competition. "When we attack a competitor, it doesn't discredit them as much as it discredits us," Kurlan writes. OMGHub.com (11/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story

On the Road 
  • Report says travel experience of fewer flights, seats isn't likely to change soon
    Airlines will likely continue measures to remain profitable amid economic volatility and high fuel prices, the Transportation Department's Office of Inspector General says in a report. "[T]he data in this report suggest that some of the most significant trends of recent years -- including but not limited to a more consolidated industry with less competition, fewer flight options for small communities, and revenue-enhancing baggage and other fees -- may continue for the foreseeable future as airlines further improve their adaptability to changing market forces," the agency report says. Tulsa World (Okla.) (11/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
App Update 
  • LinkedIn Groups can act as posters for a conference presence
    Posting to LinkedIn Groups can be a low-visibility time suck, but plastering your face next to comments is a way to build connections in preparation for a conference, John Nettles writes. "There are some really great groups out there. It's just that LinkedIn Groups were not created to be RSS feeds. Unless your branding goals are carefully targeted, you may want to consider building your reputation through other means," Nettles writes. RepCapitalMedia.com (11/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Featured Content 
 

Making Small Talk 
  • Students send burger on a wild ride into the atmosphere
    A group of Harvard students, aided by funding from a local restaurant, recently sent a hamburger high into the atmosphere. It was lifted by a weather balloon, and its ascent took about two hours. After the fallen container was retrieved from a tree, the students were rewarded with footage of the burger's journey, which had been captured on camera. The Daily Mail (London) (11/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
 
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SmartQuote 
[C]ustomers these days are too mobile, too connected, and too informed to tolerate any gap between what one department says and another does."
--Steve McKee, president of McKee Wallwork Cleveland, writing at Bloomberg Businessweek
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