17June

Is The CEO Activist Going To Remain A Massive Trend?

Is The CEO Activist Going To Remain A Massive Trend?
So here's Lnk Agency's quick, snackable trend brief for the week to continue to help you better navigate the New Era. Here's what to watch:
1) CEO Activist - So a few years ago I noticed this trend back when Howard Schultz, former CEO of Starbucks just first started wading into such territory for the brand. Then Tim Cook, CEO of Apple and Marc Benioff CEO of Salesforce became vocal about anti-gay discrimination pertaining to some incidents in Atlanta, GA.  There were some sporadic activities from CEOs here and there regarding social justice prior to these three (and a few others) I just mentioned, but primarily around 2016/2017 is when I started to see activity that I forecasted would become the norm. I wrote about this a bit more in Forbes in 2018
And now in 2020, confronted with massive cultural change, we see "Activist "as a definite, new part of the job description not only for high-profile CEOs but across the board and for nearly anyone in a "leadership" position, overall.
Check it out: in the latest poll from Morning Consult - 
  • 66% of adults expect every company to have a POV or make a statement about BLM
  • 83% say actions speak louder than words from companies and people of note
 
But why does the public have such expectations? 
 
In part because brands and companies have super-inserted themselves into our lives giving them nearly almost a persona so naturally we expect them to demonstrate some type of responsibility.  In addition, in what I call a Leaderful era, where everyone is his or her own media company, publisher, hotelier, paparazzi, and more thanks to various tech platforms, individual voice is empowered and amplified more than ever and that voice realizes demands can be made and change can result from that.
 
Everyone get ready, we'll see much more of this in new and varied ways. If you are in any type of visible role, chance are that people will be looking to you to create and stand by statements around values. There may be great stress around this as values are rarely homogenous. Those who have strong cultural intel and innovation around it will be massively successful in this new era. Others, ummm... not so much. 
Use our Influence Insights here to deepen your digital content strategy in your communication plans, for sure.
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Posted in Trend Blog