Knowledge is a powerful tool. It’s unique to our individual skill sets and interests. And if you’re doing it right, your wealth of knowledge is consistently evolving.
At Innovatemap, our team thrives on knowledge and continuous growth. When we learn something new, we feel compelled to share with others.
We’ve compiled a list of resources from the year that inspired us to do better work and be better teammates. We use these resources to fuel our fire and continue to grow.
From design inspiration and collaboration tools, to becoming a better listener and finding your Zen, we hope you’ll find value in a few lessons we learned throughout the year.
Tina Hafer called this a “must-read for product marketers and product company leaders.” Martina joined Tina on the Better Product Unlock Product Marketing podcast series to share her product expertise. Whether it’s education or affirmation, “LOVED” defines how product marketing shapes tech companies for the better.
This flowcharting tool has more than doubled its offerings in the last year. Kate Harrison and the Product Management team use it to build deliverables like information architectures and solution overviews. Recent feature releases enhanced capabilities around collaboration and integration with commonly used products like Figma. “I see Whimsical as the most valuable tool for visually representing thoughts that will help define a product’s direction,” Kate explained.
Chapman’s concepts inspire Christina Ip to design products that resonate with users and create long-term, emotional connections.By tapping into user behaviors, Christina and the product design team understand why and how people create relationships with products or services. “Emotional connections are a sign of good design,” Christina said. “By understanding the relationships between the company and the product, as well as the user and the product, I can build meaningful connections through design.”
Both in society and in the workplace, we need to learn how to have healthy and respectful debates. Bo Seo, a two-time debating world champion, discusses the significance of listening and how readers can use debate to improve communication with friends, family and colleagues. “It’s the way we connect and learn from each other. This book gives a refreshing perspective on how to debate and listen well,” said Christian Beck.
Christian called this book “required reading” for all startup founders who want to build PLG products. Unlike most books that only cover successful companies, “The Cold Start” illustrates how to get the flywheel moving from the start. Chen, an investment partner and former Uber executive breaks down PLG at every stage of growth.
Don’t let the headline fool you, “this book is beneficial for everyone, not just copywriters,” said Cassidy Belk. From this quick, but powerful read, Cassidy learned ways to improve her own copywriting, and how to measure success in advertisements. With decades of industry experience, Dan shows how advertisements and headlines resonate (or don’t) with buyers.
TJ Nieset uses this resource to give and receive community input from the best designers in the industry. “It’s a go-to site for our entire design team to explore brand trends, industry insights and fair critiques,” TJ said. The platform prioritizes relevant content, and it features brand designs from notable products and companies across all industries.
Michael Bungay Stanier
There’s no shortage of resources available covering how to lead in a modern way. Thanks to “The Advice Trap,” Lacey Lavies said she’s learned how to lead “not through power or dominance, but with heart, and helping others see and use their gifts by leaning on their own wisdom.” This book gives you tools to change behaviors and stay curious, while taming your inner Advice Monster.
In a world that never slows down, Lacey prioritizes daily meditation for her own wellbeing, and for her team members. “The power of short meditation is freeing because it gets you out of your own head,” Lacey said. She recommends the 30-day How to Meditate series and often frequents the Daily Calm sessions. But she gets the most value from the sleep meditations — “Those alone are worth the cost of an annual subscription!”
Personal and professional growth can be a slow process. Nick Roethlein listens to acquire professional development tools and apply them to his own journey. Inspired by this episode featuring ButcherBox CEO Mike Salguero, Nick said, “It’s motivating to see how people overcome bumps in the road to create something bigger and better than what they initially planned.” Nick learned that, while consistency is key to holding yourself accountable, it’s okay to give yourself some grace to bounce back from mishaps and failures.
Sara Croft introduced this book to the Marketing team to understand how personal brands can impact company brands. Dave focuses on how you can use your personal brand to distinguish yourself from the crowd regardless of industry, product or company size. “Seasoned marketers will enjoy verifying their strategies and may look at their founders to say ‘see, I told you so,’” explains Sara. “And marketers just starting their career should pick this up like it’s a handbook.”
If you’re looking for a book to make you a better teammate, this is it. Nearly half of the Innovatemap team read this book (and listened to Liz’s podcast interview with Brene Brown). Each person had their own list of unique takeaways, but we all gained powerful tools to identify opportunities versus threats, make work light, finish stronger, ask and adjust and make ourselves useful. Luckily, this book is relevant for everyone — from CEO’s to stay-at-home dads and everyone in between.
As we turn the page on another year, we’re excited to see what new resources we’ll add to our Innovatemap library, podcast queue and product toolbox.
If you’re interested in enjoying resources with us throughout the year, follow us on LinkedIn.