There are way too many channels with nothing on -- to borrow an old T.V. phrase. Content is everywhere, both bad, good and somewhere in between. In a previous posting, the statement, "community trumps content," was made with conviction. But the message also unintentionally overlooked a key dynamic. We may engage in community, but each message reaches individuals differently, at different times and on different channels: Media, friend to friend, social, mobile, tablet, etc.
Credible individuals, first. Fake news, second. According to the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer https://www.edelman.com/trust-barometer, trust in institutions remains at epic lows. Yet trust in experts and individual journalists has increased. Despite what we hear every day at ad nauseam.
Which means if you work for a "fake news" outlet such as CNN or The New York Times, while the brand may take shots, individual reporters have increased their standing. Due, in part, to their own personal branding efforts on social media. It also doesn't hurt to have a subject named Trump around to cover 24-7.
T-Rex playbook. If you think your boss is demanding, then consider Rex Tillerson's day-to-day.
The best broadcast interview of the year so far has to be the February 18th "60 Minutes" with the Secretary of State. https://www.cbsnews.com/video/rex-tillerson-opens-up-in-rare-wide-ranging-interview. Even the well trained would be wise to accept a few cues out of the T-Rex playbook. Tillerson is an expert at delivering a message, diffusing the negative while appearing to stay true to thyself. Not many can do all that, much less in a single interview. Then again even fewer have worked globally at such a high level. Tillerson's vow to "ride for the brand," is a great battle cry, IMHO. Full disclosure: TGR is a big fan of Rex Tillerson, an American CEO original if there ever was one.
Digital governance. The mighty Coca-Cola Company, or Coke for short, recently named two new members to the company board, raising the total number of directors from 14 to 16. During a time when no large company is expanding their board, but that point digresses.
Those with longer memories may be able to recall when who was (or who was not) on the Coke board was a really BIG deal. Not anymore. One of the new appointees, an executive named Caroline Tsay, is a digital native. Meaning her entire career has been focused on the cloud and other digital-based software systems. There aren't many major company boards that have actually embraced digital realities despite the ongoing blather. Early in an accelerating trend if you're looking for the takeaway. Unlike diversity, digital reality may have real teeth. Disclaimer: This does not include the much hyped FANG masters of the universe, or Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google.
Yawn in succession. Staying with boards for a minute, has anyone in that sector really looked at themselves in the mirror lately when it comes to CEO succession? They might see a big yawn such as what's outlined here https://huntscanlon.com/egon-zehnder-newspoint-walking-the-tightrope-of-executive-succession. Bored boards and their enablers have been saying the same things to themselves for so long, it takes a healthy dose of Five Hour Energy
to find anything new or remotely interesting about what's going on. And maybe that's the whole point. If you don't know it's succession, and remain asleep, then oblivion is a great place to be. If you're a CEO and there's no succession plan in place, then you better keep moving because something or someone will swing around at some point and bite you in the you know what. Or not if you're lucky.
Then there's General Electric (GE) and their epic board shake-up in the face of management failure of the first order. Their problems are a far cry from the last paradigm when GE management practices were widely lauded. That paradigm is now over if it wasn't already a decade ago. If you're looking for a proxy on how to struggle with change, then look no further than Boston or Connecticut, or wherever GE's base resides these days.
Next posting: TGR will go deeper into the divide between the CEO/board level and the rest of the masses. Feel free to send through any particular lines or thoughts. Reverse mentoring seems to be a positive trend, would love to hear others.
Happy Spring hunting. Robins, grab those worms!