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8 Skills Of A Successful Digital Workplace Leader


As we’re about to see, digital workplaces come with a few unique challenges that leaders must learn to overcome. If you take the time to foster these eight skills, however, maintaining a harmonious, thriving and productive digital workplace might be easier than you think.

1. Is Seen as a Knowledge Leader and Resource

Maybe this one goes without saying — but you’d be surprised. Today, many workplaces are partially or all digital. If your team uses digital tools every day, it’s possible you were involved in the decision-making and roll-out process. Even if you weren’t an original evangelist for the technology or service your team now uses, you’ll still be looked at as a resource when it comes to troubleshooting and realizing its full value.

When employees have questions about a tool or platform, the process for resolving it should be, at most, two steps long. They should either be able to count on you for the answer, or you should be able to point them to a resource they can use to find out for themselves.

2. Knows How to Inspire Workplace Integrity

Integrity is a person’s ability to carry out their work or any other task in good faith, with a rational mind and with an eye for the details. In other words, workplace leaders — even and especially in a digital setting — need to inspire their team members not to cut corners and to perform the necessary due diligence in all things.

3. Practices Intellectual Curiosity

Anybody can survive long enough just by treading water. If you want to get off your island, or into a position with better pay and greater responsibilities, you need to be more than just good enough. That means expanding your mind and your skill-sets.

The digital workplace can inspire, for lack of a better word, comfort. It can be easy to fall into routines, do the same work in the same way, and put off broadening our horizons. If you’re a digital workplace leader, spend some time thinking about how your company, and your personal example, inspires your team members to engage in ongoing learning.

4. Is a Student of Human Nature

With so much business taking place on the internet these days, your role as a leader may find you stepping into several different functions in the course of a day. One hour, you may be helping a team of remote workers configure a new collaboration tool. The next hour, you may be on the phone with a client who’d like an update on their latest campaign.

Communicating and collaborating digitally to this extent can stifle the sense that we’re all working toward the same goal. Knowing when to make a phone call instead of sending an email, or maintaining reasonable flexibility with respect to deadlines, can go a long way.

5. Communicates Deliberately and Clearly

This one’s straightforward enough on paper, but how about in practice? Be honest with yourself: Do you find you have to repeat directions on a regular basis? Do members of your team miss deadlines because they weren’t sure what was expected? Communicating clearly in a digital workplace can be difficult with limited face-time. Luckily, complex or multi-step processes can be illuminated pretty clearly with screenshots or even screen-sharing.

For the most part, though, just taking more care with communicating clearly can go a long way toward eliminating misunderstandings.

6. Has Open Channels for Providing Feedback

Leaders in the digital workplace might be engaging with contractors on design projects one minute and lining up calls with clients the next. Both relationship types require feedback to flow in two directions when it needs to.

One convenient way to leave your door open in a digital setting is to include a Google Form or similar feedback mechanism in your teams’ resources. It doesn’t have to be fancy. In Google’s case, submissions are sent — anonymously if you like — right to your inbox. Every leader needs an open-door policy. They just look a bit different these days.

7. Delegates When It’s Necessary

If you’re lucky enough to do something you love for a living, it can be easy to burn the candle at both ends even without trying. The digital workplace isn’t any different in that respect. In fact, it provides some interesting tools you might not have in a more traditional setting that can help take some of the more tedious burdens off your shoulders.

There are actually more online resources than you might think for creating micro-jobs for independent, gig-based contractors to tackle. Amazon Mechanical Turks and Fiverr are two examples. Others include Appen, EasyShift and Field Agent. These days, not every task you want to delegate requires you to expand your team in a permanent way.

8. Radiates Passion for the Work

The eighth and perhaps most important thing digital workplace leaders need — and they need enough of it that remote teams can see and feel it half a world away if they need to — is passion for what they do. We don’t all have to love every second of our jobs, but executing every task to the best of our ability takes passion. What else would you call it? If you’ve managed to pick up this skill along the way, don’t be surprised if many of the others fall into place, too.

Digital workplace leaders need many skills to execute their jobs with aplomb. Mastering these crucial abilities will help your company and your employees thrive.



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Entrepreneurship

An ‘Outside-the-Box’ Approach to the e-Commerce Unboxing Experience


Running a profitable Facebook Ads campaign is simple. Not always easy, but simple.

There is a formula that can guarantee a profitable Facebook Ad campaign. Once you know the formula and the values to plug in, you’ll never sink money into a losing digital ad campaign again. I know it sounds too good to be true, but stick with me…

The Guaranteed Growth Formula

Here’s the entire formula: CPA < AP

Were you expecting coefficients, remainders and dividing by polynomials? Nope, there are only two values that matter when assessing your digital marketing funnel.

1. CPA – Cost Per Acquisition

2. AP – Average Profit Per Client

If your Cost Per Acquisition, the amount you pay to generate a paying customer using Facebook Ads, is less than the Average Profit you make from each new customer you’re guaranteed a profitable campaign.

Calculating Average Profit

To get average profit per client, sum your total revenue from new clients and subtract what you spent to serve them. Divide the result by the total new clients. For example, if you made $75,000 from 10 new clients over the past year and it cost you $40,000 to serve them, your average profit is:

 ($75,000 – $40,000) / 10 = $3500 Average Profit Per Client

If your average acquisition cost for similar future clients is less than $3500, your campaign will technically be profitable.

Of course most businesses won’t want to spend all of their profit on acquisition. An average business can expect to invest at least 7 percent but no more than 15 percent of revenue in sales and marketing. If Cost of Goods accounts for 60 percent or more of total revenue, your low profit margin may make it difficult to afford successful advertising. Decrease operating costs by increasing efficiency or adjust your margin by raising prices.

Don’t make the mistake of calculating Average Profit based on revenue only from the first sale. Use at least six months of revenue or your lifetime client value as the basis for your calculation, or you risk underfunding your marketing and sales budget.

Related: Here Is Why Your Facebook Ad Campaigns Aren’t Producing Results

Calculating Cost Per Acquisition

Let’s assume you’ve considered all of your marketing and sales costs and determined you can spend $350 per new client on Facebook Ads. Let’s reverse engineer your ad campaign to see if a $350 cost of acquisition is reasonable.

The simplest Facebook ads funnel includes four metrics that build upon each other to determine your acquisition cost. I’ve included standard benchmarks for use as a starting point, but your results may differ:

1. Click-Through Rate (CTR) – Percentage of people clicking on your ad. Your CTR should be near or above 1 percent.

2. Cost Per Click (CPC) – The cost of one website visit. CPC should generally be below $3.

3. Lead Conversion Rate – The percentage of site traffic that becomes qualified leads. This value should be 20 percent or above.

4. Sales Conversion Rate – The percentage of leads that convert to a sale. Aim for sales conversion at or above 5 percent. (E-commerce companies often skip the Lead Conversion stage and have a Sales Conversion Rate of 1 percent or greater.)

If 10,000 people view your ad at a 1 percent CTR, you’ll get about 100 website visits. At a $3 CPC, you’ve spent $300. Since 20 percent of your traffic will become leads and 5 percent of those leads become closed sales, we can calculate that you’ll generate approximately 60 leads and three new customers.

Your estimated acquisition cost using Facebook Ads is $100 per client, which is well within your budget of $350. This cost may rise as you scale and target less optimal prospects, but as long as your acquisition cost is less than $350 you’ll make an acceptable profit.

Complex funnels can include several ads and conversion points, but the Guaranteed Growth Formula of CPA < AP still applies. There’s no immediate reason for concern if your metrics differ from the benchmarks. You can and should split test ideas for improvement if your numbers are far from what you expect, but don’t mess up a good thing until you’ve got a better one.

Optimising Your Guaranteed Growth Funnel

If unhealthy metrics cause your acquisition to cost more than what you’ve budgeted, start with these adjustments:

Click-Through Rate Too Low or Cost Per Click Too High

If your CTR falls far under 1 percent Facebook may stop showing your ads or show them to second-rate audiences causing your traffic to tank and CPC to increase. To improve your click metrics, adjust your ad copy (headline and body text), ad creative (image or video) and highlight the benefits in your offer.

Refine your audience. Tailor your copy, images and call-to-action to the audience you’ve selected and ensure that your audience has the desire and means to act.

Lead Conversion Too Low

If leads aren’t converting at 20 percent or more, either the promise made by your ad isn’t congruent with your landing page, or the process of moving forward is too difficult. Try using the same image and headline in your ad and reduce the form fields in sign-up forms to the bare minimum. Also try retargeting visitors who don’t sign up with ads stating the benefits of acting now, or with a different offer.

Related: Staying Relevant In The Facebook Age Of Meaningful Social Interactions

Sales Conversion Too Low

If you’re an Ecommerce brand with sales conversion below 1 percent your shopping cart or sales process may have too much friction. Simplify the sales process to decrease clutter, or increase trust by adding testimonials and trust signals near important calls to action.

Your sales process may need improvement, but that is beyond this article. In the meantime, you can still increase revenue by cross-selling and upselling those who convert. You may also improve client retention with recurring contracts. Yes, that’s why many software companies are switching to cloud-based subscription models.

When used properly, The Guaranteed Growth Formula of CPA < AP makes Facebook Ad marketing an investment, not an expense. Using the formula, the most you should ever risk is a small initial budget to test whether your estimated calculations hold true in practice.

If your net profit is 3X your acquisition cost, your funnel returns $3 for every $1 you invest. Instead of asking “How much should I spend on marketing?” The question becomes, “How much do I want to make?” I’ve built a Facebook Ad Growth Calculator that incorporates the Guaranteed Growth Formula to help execute your growth strategy. Input your revenue goal and it will estimate the Facebook Ad impressions and traffic required to reach it.

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.





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