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16 Leadership Resources for Any Stage of Your Career [+ 9 Extra Tools]

When you think of leadership resources, terms like ROI, budget, and management might come to mind. But the data is in.

There’s a new way to think about leadership. It’s time to focus on the relationships that are essential to business success.

According to a 2021 Gallup report, only 20% of employees feel engaged at work. Low employee engagement is a quality of life issue, and it’s also expensive. Low engagement costs companies $8.1 trillion per year.

Whether you’re starting your first job or managing a tough team, these resources for leadership development can help. These are the tools that can help you thrive both personally and professionally.

While there are many qualities that make someone a great leader, this list focuses on three areas that anyone can use:

Leadership Resources for Empathy

Leadership Resources for Communication

Leadership Resources for Support and Development

Let’s get started.

Leadership Resources for Empathy

Empathy makes it onto every top ten list for leadership qualities. Empathy can improve:

Innovation
Engagement
Retention
Inclusivity

But a 2021 EY study says that 54% of employees left their jobs because of a lack of empathy from their boss.

These resources can help you be a more empathetic and authentic leader. And they can help you whether you’re working to support your teammates or leading your own team.

1. The Radical Candor Framework

Book, Podcast, and Workshops

Price: $18 for the book, cost varies for other services

Commitment: Varies depending on the services you choose

What it offers:

After an important presentation, Kim Scott’s boss, Sheryl Sandberg– yes, the one who wrote Lean In– had some feedback. Harsh feedback. The kind of feedback that stings. But because Scott knew that Sandberg was coming from a compassionate place when giving her feedback, Scott accepted it, moved on, and became better.

Scott took this pivotal interaction and used it to develop a framework for giving better feedback at work. It’s a framework for feedback that embraces both brutal honesty and profound empathy.

Why we like this leadership resource:

The Radical Candor Framework offers worthy advice on how to add empathy to your interactions at work. It’s a useful tool for leaders at any point in their careers.

2. No Straight Path

Podcast

Price: Free

Commitment: 30-50 minutes per week

What it offers:

This new HubSpot podcast hosted by Ashley Menzies Babatunde examines the human stories behind the glossy façade of business leadership.

Instead of drawing a clear line from start to success, Menzies unpacks the ups and downs of life. This podcast talks about how setbacks and unexpected gifts can form a path toward leadership and achievement.

Why we like this free leadership resource:

Tactical business podcasts can often skip the challenges or put a positive spin on hard moments. This show offers a fresh alternative. It emphasizes the quality of empathy not just for others, but also for yourself.

3. LinkedIn Learning

Online courses

Price: $19.99 a month for an annual subscription

Commitment: Course times vary from 20 minutes to 5+ hours

What it offers:

If there’s a professional skill you want to advance, chances are, LinkedIn Learning has a course for it. It offers classes in everything from Excel, to audio production, to coding.

Why we like these resources for leadership development:

Their programming doesn’t just teach traditional ideas about leadership. Top-rated courses in 2021 included:

Unconscious Bias
Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging
Critical Thinking

4. TED Radio Hour

Podcast

Price: Free

Commitment: About an hour, once a week

What it offers:

Around here, we love a good TED talk. But trying to pick just one out of volumes of valuable presentations is as tricky as trying to pick one thing to watch on Netflix. That’s what makes the TED Radio Hour podcast so valuable.

Why we like this free leadership resource:

It takes some of the most intriguing TED talk topics — like making amends, balancing work, play, and rest, or even gratitude— and builds episodes based on them.

5. Blinkist

Mobile App

Price: $8.34 a month for an annual subscription

Commitment: 15 minutes a day

What it offers:

Blinkist offers bite-sized overviews of the latest non-fiction books that you can read or listen to on your phone. This helps you keep up with the latest research on the topics that are important to the people on your team.

Why we like this leadership resource:

This is a great learning tool for time-strapped professionals. Empathy begins with understanding, and this app makes it easy to recognize challenges and passions that may not be top of mind in your world.

6. Side Hustle Pro

Podcast

Price: Free

Commitment: Each episode is under an hour.

What it offers:

Side Hustle Pro highlights black female entrepreneurs who made their side job a profitable business. Host Nicaila Matthews Okome talks about finance, online business, and marketing. She also covers business trends in fashion, health, and wellness.

Why we like these free leadership resources:

This podcast has more than extensive interviews with business experts, there’s a Bootcamp series too. This is great for new listeners who aren’t sure where to start. The Bootcamp boosts newbies with an ebook, uplifting emails, and an engaged Facebook community. Many of her podcast guests share the challenges that led them to create their products and services.

More resources:

If you’re working on empathy skills on your own, you may enjoy these resources for active listening. Another great choice comes from CompassPoint. They offer online and in-person training for nonprofits and BIPOC leaders.

Leadership Resources for Communication

Communication is another leadership skill that anyone can develop.

But being a great communicator is much more than being funny or well-spoken. Most people think they’re good communicators, but the data disagrees. A 2022 Grammarly and Harris Poll says that businesses lose up to $1.2 trillion a year from ineffective communication.

And only 19% of U.S. employees think that leadership communicates effectively in their organization.

Get ready to improve your communication skills.

7. Toastmasters

Online learning and club membership

Price: Club membership costs $7.50 per month, and includes Pathways learning in the membership fee.

Commitment: Varies, may include attending meetings for one to two hours every one to two weeks.

What it offers:

Public speaking isn’t exactly a requirement for being a strong leader, but as you progress in your career, it might become part of your job (think: presenting at large team meetings or to a board), and it’s a skill that can help set you apart from the pack.

You can join a Toastmasters club and take part in their online learning program. Their resources can step up your skills with advice on topics like:

Presentation skills
Goal setting
Dealing with nervousness and building confidence

Why we like these resources for leadership development:

Toastmasters has been a leader in public speaking since the organization started in the early 1920s. With over 300,000 members and 15,000+ clubs, they offer a large community. They also have a broad range of tools to develop your communication and leadership skills.

8. Rapport Leadership Training

Online and in-person workshops

Price: Courses run from $199-2,595 per course

Commitment: Varies depending on the training you choose

What it offers:

Their focus is intensive 2.5-day courses. Rapport also offers self-guided online learning to work on leadership skills.

Options include:

Cultivating Culture
Emotional Intelligence
Feedback and Coaching

Why we like this leadership resource:

Rapport has 30+ years of experience in principles-focused training. Their intensive courses focus on applying new skills to real-life situations. Rapport online classes also include a range of different media to support unique learning styles.

9. Bunch

Mobile app

Price: Free

Commitment: Two minutes a day.

What it offers:

This coaching app is a simple way to add leadership learning to your busy schedule. It offers quick daily leadership tips. They also have leadership style quizzes and targeted suggestions for deeper learning.

Why we like this leadership resource:

This app personalizes the experience of learning. Instead of giving general tips, they work to align their content with your main interests. Bunch also offers a podcast, a blog, and an active Slack community for extra support when you want it.

10. Simon Sinek’s InspireU

Online courses

Price: Course fees range from $40-250, and there is also a free podcast.

Commitment: Course times run from under 25 minutes to 90+ minutes.

What it offers:

Live and on-demand online courses that cover Sinek’s teachings from his books. They also have resources for self-care and leadership from a range of experts. His popular “Start with Why” course includes both solo and partner exercises.

Why we like these leadership resources:

Sinek’s philosophies have influenced leadership thinking since his Ted Talk in 2009. This course focuses on the value of inspiration in leadership. If you are struggling with motivating yourself or your team, this could be a great resource to recharge.

11. MindTools

Club with access to exclusive resources

Price: Limited free access, and $27 per month for membership.

Commitment: Varies depending on the training you choose

What it offers:

Mindtools offers hundreds of resources for communication including:

Short trainings
Expert interviews
Book synopsis

Why we like these resources for leadership development:

Mindtools includes both personal and organizational learning modules. This can help you no matter what your leadership challenges are. Their free tools for communication alone contain a wealth of tools for growth.

Whether you want to dig into value propositions and body language or get the basics of giving feedback, Mindtools is a great resource for leadership development.

More resources:

The GLSNext mobile app offers insights from business leaders in videos, blogs, and podcasts.

Leadership Resources for Support and Development

Leaders are only as great as their team. It takes time and experience to support today’s workplace.

Do you want to build skills and business acumen? Are you curious about leadership philosophy? Do you want to grow your own business? Are you hoping to influence people where you work?

These leadership tools can help you understand and prepare for the challenges that might lay ahead. They can help you whether you’re leading from the top down or the bottom up.

12. Brené Brown’s Dare to Lead Hub

Book, Videos, Podcast, Workbook, and Training

Price: The book costs $20. Training costs vary by the facilitator.

Commitment: Varies depending on the resource you choose

What it offers:

Brown writes powerful books that can help you better understand how to lead. Her site also has hubs that enable a more intensive exploration of the themes in her books.

This includes the “Dare to Lead” hub, which offers a video, workbook, assessment, and other tools for aspiring leaders.

Why we like these resources for leadership development:

Sometimes, it feels like we have to know everything to be a leader. We have to learn how to manage projects, delegate tasks, and analyze outcomes. But then, there are the leadership lessons that don’t always get the biggest headlines, like learning to be accountable and embrace vulnerability.

Taking risks requires some degree of becoming vulnerable, and strong leaders know when to take calculated risks. But that doesn’t just apply to work leadership — Brown’s resources also explore how vulnerability and courage can help in other areas of life.

13. HubSpot Academy

Online courses

Price: Free

Commitment: Varies depending on the resource you choose

What it offers:

HubSpot Academy is best known for its excellent certification programs in Inbound Marketing, Sales, Social Media Marketing, and Content Marketing. But it doesn’t stop there. This leadership resource also offers 100+ lessons, courses, and learning paths to support leaders in every facet of business operations.

Why we like these free leadership resources:

The HubSpot team is constantly creating new content and updating courses to meet the needs of a rapidly changing work world.

14. Dale Carnegie Training

Online and in-person courses for groups and individuals

Price: Course prices range from $150-2500 per course.

Commitment: Varies by training. Most on-demand courses offer a full year of online access.

What it offers:

Carnegie has unique courses for both organizations and individuals. Online courses are available live online, on-demand, and with an online subscription.

Before 2020, 98% of Carnegie courses were available in person only. They scaled fast to create leadership resources that are available in 32 languages and in 86 countries.

Why we like this leadership resource:

We all need feedback from a real human being, and on occasion, it can be the most enlightening to get it from someone outside your company or industry.

Carnegie started teaching about leadership in 1912. The principles of his best-selling book focus on ideas about wellbeing that are only now taking hold in workplaces.

Whether you’re looking for broad instruction on leadership or more targeted learning for your specific challenges, Dale Carnegie courses can help.

They offer over 80 course options. Their website also has white papers, case studies, and webinars if you’re not sure where to start.

15. How I Built This

Podcast

Price: Free

Commitment: About an hour a week.

What it offers:

This podcast has over 400 episodes of business leadership know-how. Each episode features the founders of a business and how they got their start.

Why we like this free leadership resource:

Listening to founder stories is an easy way to take in topics like accountability and resilience. It’s also a chance to understand how founders manage complexity in their startups. These anecdotes can help you figure out which skills and tools can help you prepare to meet your goals.

16. HubSpot Podcast Network

Podcast

Price: Free

Commitment: Varies by podcast, usually about an hour

What it offers:

If you’re not ready to pick a favorite, the HubSpot Podcast Network offers 26 podcasts and counting. Each has a unique take on business development, growth, and priorities.

From stories of epic failure to the recovery that followed it, HubSpot hosts interview guests who share their most intriguing organizational, cultural, conceptual, and team insights.

Why we like this leadership resource:

If your schedule is tight, there is nothing like getting the basics done while listening to a strategic podcast. These podcasts cover targeted topics like change management, negotiation, and tech news. This resource can shed light on the big and small challenges you face as a leader every day.

So, spend some time with professionals from HubSpot and The Hustle. They offer insights you can use on your path to leadership enlightenment.

More resources:

Books are also great resources for leadership development. These two long-time bestsellers continue to be relevant and popular if you want to know how to lead effectively.

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey

If you want more resources for support and development, these are some other great tools to look into:

ASAE
In Good Company
Coursera
Black Founders

Put These Leadership Resources Into Action

It’s not unusual to seek out a list like this after a difficult conversation or challenge at work. And it’s just as common to add a bookmark to your browser and forget about it until the next issue pops up.

So, get started now, even if you can only spare a few minutes. One great resource could be all that you need to change the way you lead.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in May 2017 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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Best Times to Post on YouTube in 2022 [Research]

In 2022, we surveyed over 500 video marketers and found that YouTube sees the highest usage, more than TikTok and Instagram. It’s also the platform marketers will invest the most in this year.

With so much emphasis placed on the platform, we wanted to know what times and days publishers saw the best results.

Keep reading to learn what we discovered.

Creating a video for YouTube isn’t an easy task. First comes ideation, then scripting followed by filming, and finally editing – and that’s just at a high level. Imagine doing all that work just to upload a video that doesn’t get much traction.

When you’re first starting out, you’re bound to struggle. However, if you’ve been at it for a while and are still not getting any traction from your videos, your upload time could be the culprit.

Back in 2021, we surveyed 300+marketers in the United States for our Social Media Trends Report and asked them, “What’s the best time to post on YouTube?

To start, our report revealed that most marketers surveyed say they post on YouTube four to six times a week – as much as they post on Instagram, TikTok, Reddit, and many other social platforms. The only platforms where respondents posted every day were Facebook and Twitter.

While other social media platforms offer countless formats to engage audiences, from ephemeral content and in-feed posts to polls and live streaming, YouTube is slow to expand its formats.

As such, it’s surprising that marketers are posting as often on the platform, given that it’s a platform focused on long-form content.

As for the best times to post on the platform, here’s the breakdown:

31% of respondents said 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
23% of respondents said 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
19% of respondents said 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Note: Respondents were instructed to answer in their current time zone and for context, roughly 40% of respondents were located in the Eastern time zone.

As for the best days, data shows that it’s the weekend with Saturdays being the most popular answer, followed by Fridays and then Sundays.

One way to explain this is that the weekend gives consumers more time to explore the platform and dive into their favorite long-form content.

Other video platforms like TikTok and Instagram focus on short-form content, making it easy for consumers to get what they need during breaks throughout the day. YouTube, however, requires a bigger time commitment.

When is the worst time to post on YouTube?

Wondering when you shouldn’t post on the platform? According to our social media trends report, Mondays aren’t so popular among marketers.

Only 5% of marketers surveyed said Mondays were the best time to post on the video platform. The second least-popular day was Tuesday, followed by Wednesday.

As for the times, here’s the breakdown:

6 a.m. to 9 a.m.
9 p.m. to 12 a.m. (midnight)
9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Fewer than 20% of respondents said an early morning posting (between 6 a.m. and noon) offered the best results.

Does it matter what time you post on YouTube?

The answer to this is both yes and no. Yes, it does matter what time you post on YouTube in the short term because it will impact how many views your video gets within the first few hours. Optimizing your views during this time period can help you generate more traffic to your content and help the growth of your channel.

However, it doesn’t play a huge role in the long term. Say your video was posted at 3 a.m., that has little impact on how many views it can garner over the next couple of months or years. Unlike a platform like Instagram where fresh content is key to success, novelty is not the biggest ranking factor on YouTube – relevance is.

This means that even if your video may not perform well initially, if it’s the most relevant video to a user’s query, it can quickly gain traction.

How to Find Your Channel’s Best Time to Post

Your Analytics dashboard is the best place to go to find the most accurate and reliable data on your channel – including the best time to post.

If your channel generates enough traffic, you’ll gain access to an advanced report which shows you when your viewers are most active on the platform. 

To access this page, follow these steps.

Open YouTube Studio.
Click on “Analytics.”
Open the “Audience” tab and view your report. 

Knowing the best times and days to post on YouTube isn’t meant to be a strict ruling on when you should post. Instead, it should be used as a guide to optimizing your channel for short- and long-term success.

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Why Workplace Authenticity Matters More than Ever, According to Credly’s VP of Customer Success

Pre-pandemic, it was relatively easy to keep tight boundaries between our personal and professional lives.

But in a post-pandemic world, things have shifted. Now, people have their dogs or children in the background during Zoom calls. Others have yoga breaks and book clubs blocked into their work calendars.

Companies have also put a bigger focus on their employees’ mental and physical health: For instance, HubSpot began offering its employees access to mental health tool Modern Health, as well as an employee discount for the Headspace app.

All of which is to say: The workplace has changed, and whether people work from home or return to the office, they’re going to want — and expect — the freedom of bringing their full selves to work.

Here, I sat down with Krystal Lamoureux, VP of Customer Success at Credly, to learn her leadership tips for encouraging employees to bring their full selves to work. Let’s dive in.

What It Means to Bring Your Whole Self to Work, and Why It Matters

For starters, I asked Lamoureux what it means to bring her ‘full self’ to work.

She told me, “I think the pandemic has helped me realize that being a professional does not mean I have to check my personal life at the door. It forced me to shrink everything about me to fit inside the four walls of my home. Suddenly work, school, and play were all occurring in the same place and at the same time. Pre-pandemic, my kids went to school and I commuted to the office. Somewhere in the car post-drop off, I switched from mom to professional.”

Lamoureux adds, “When the pandemic hit, I no longer had the option to segment my day or attention the way I used to and, as a result, the way I work has changed (for the better). Not only has my wardrobe shifted to more casual options (leggings, yoga pants, and hoodies for the most part), but I’ve also adjusted when and how I work.”

Research has shown tremendous benefits to authenticity in the workplace, both for individuals and for organizations at-large. For instance, Simmons University Institute for Inclusive Leadership’s 2021 Leadership Development Survey found people who behaved authentically at work felt more confident, more deeply engaged, and happier.

Additionally, respondents said being authentic enabled them to build stronger coworker relationships, and roughly half even said authenticity made them “more able to do their best work” in the office.

Authenticity in the workplace can’t happen without psychological safety, but it’s a critical component for happy, healthy employees. Additionally, it’s simply a good business practice to foster authenticity in the workplace, since people who feel they can bring their full selves to work ultimately connect more deeply and fully with their team — leading to lower turnover rates and higher engagement.

As Lamoureux puts it: Our personalities, experiences, likes and dislikes, and goals and aspirations all join together to form the person who shows up for work every day anyway.

“Bringing our whole selves to work creates a much richer, more authentic product for everyone involved. Allowing people to bring their whole selves to work creates a more authentic, happier work life.”

So — what does authenticity look like in practice?

Lamoureux told me, “I don’t have a dedicated office space in my home, but I usually set up shop at the dining room table where I have a tidy background for video calls. When I’m chatting with my team, I’ll move to my couch to snuggle with my pup. Our CEO often encourages us to turn our cameras off and walk around during calls to avoid Zoom-fatigue. Knowing that I’m not always expected to be on-camera allows me flexibility to tend to laundry while I participate in a meeting.”

Aspects of Lamoureux’s life outside of work — her dining room, her puppy, and her laundry — will inevitably mingle with Lamoureux’s work, and she’s okay with that.

As she puts it, “Am I always at my desk? No. Am I still working and being productive? Yes. Do I have a better work-life balance? Absolutely.”

In terms of leadership, there’s a delicate balance between encouraging authenticity and expecting your employees to deliver results, but with empathy and trust, you can find a way to accomplish both.

Lamoureux told me, “I expect my team to be responsible, responsive, and complete what needs to be completed. I also expect them to take care of their family obligations and their health. We do a work-life blend at Credly — meaning there will be times we are online shopping for new shoes on Tuesday at 3 p.m. (and getting opinions from coworkers), and other times when we’re answering emails at 9 p.m. on a Thursday. The bottom line is that I want them to set healthy boundaries because it’s necessary for us all to do good work.”

How can you encourage authenticity in the workplace?

Creating fun ways for employees to interact with one another that isn’t work-related is an effective starting point for encouraging authenticity.

At Credly, Lamoureux’s team has coffee breaks and book clubs to connect with one another and learn more about each other as full human beings.

Coffee Breaks: We have a weekly coffee break with only one rule: no work allowed. Sometimes, we incorporate a theme into our coffee breaks encouraging people to dress up or bring something to share. It allows us to show bits of ourselves in a fun way. We’ve learned so much about one another from these casual conversations.
Book Club: we generally read 2-3 books per year as a team. Sometimes, they are work-related, but sometimes they aren’t. We’ve had such deep, rich discussions in those book club meetings!

Additionally, one of the most effective and simple ways to encourage authenticity is to lead by example. The more authentic you can be as a leader, the more you’re giving employees permission to do the same. 

How do businesses fail when it comes to creating an authentic culture?

Finally, I asked Lamoureux how she feels most businesses fail when it comes to authenticity.

She told me, “I think most businesses want the best for their employees but are afraid to reset what a productive, professional environment looks like. Our world of work isn’t what it was two years ago, and as the world opens up again and employees return to offices, I think it could be tempting for business leaders to try to function the same way they did pre-pandemic.”

“It’s the baseline for ‘normal’ — how things used to be. But with all the turmoil of the pandemic, we’ve also learned new, wonderful ways of working and it’s essential that organizations keep those elements.”

Ultimately, it’s critical your team learns how to pivot and meet the needs of each employee today. Perhaps those needs have changed as a result of the pandemic; or, maybe the pandemic simply brought them to light. Either way, to increase the satisfaction, engagement, and happiness of your employees, it’s vital you encourage and foster authenticity.