Whether you work for a small business or a Fortune 500 enterprise, marketing is a critical part of the business. How you organize your marketing team and your work says a lot about whether or not your team will succeed.

Developing a productive environment where team members can do their best work even under stressful deadlines is a true leadership skill. But how does one create an environment where creativity can grow and productivity is king?

After working for several startups and Fortune 1000 companies, I've had my share of experiences with marketing leaders—some great, some not so great. The most effective marketing leaders tend to have the following seven traits in common.

1. Effective marketing leaders mentor; they don't micro-manage

A good marketing leader surrounds herself with an A-list team she can trust—the people who just "get it done." Such people empower the team to take ownership and provide a model of responsibility for other team members to emulate (because we all know not all teams are made of only "A" players).

Great marketing leaders can identify who these A-list folks are by having clear visibility into team projects, if need be by using tools that allow for such insight. When leaders can clearly see all the nitty-gritty details of projects, they can identify top performers, which also encourages others to step up and contribute. And that's what marketing leaders should want—a culture of accountability and self-motivation.

2. Effective marketing leaders assemble the right team, no matter the location

The office is becoming more and more mobile, with team members often working across locations, cities, or even countries. As a result, team meetings and conversations around the water cooler are going virtual, with social and collaborative technology playing an increasingly important role.

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image of Jodi Sorensen

Jodi Sorensen is the director of marketing for Smartsheet.com, a spreadsheet-inspired collaboration tool used by more than two million people worldwide to organize, plan, and execute projects and processes.

Twitter: @jodisorensen

LinkedIn: Jodi Sorensen