FridayForums regal us with insightful conversations about the state of PR and how to wrangle through a world gripped in unpredictability. We were fascinated, abhorred and inspired (sometimes all at the same time!) by the events of 2020. I remember vividly how our fearless Chapter President Vanessa Yanez, snapped into action to launch the FridayForum series last March at the beginning of what became a very long shelter in place.
The first FridayForum of 2021 featured Dr. Kyle Dropp, co-founder and president of Morning Consult, a rapidly-growing 250-person global technology and media company that’s changing how executives use data and information to make decisions. As the leader of Morning Consult’s research division, Kyle oversees research relationships with dozens of Fortune 500 companies, media organizations and industry trade associations.
Three Tips to Decide When to Comment
Kyle shared grim (but unsurprising) statistics about the growing mistrust of the media, social media and our leaders. Ten years ago, it was more common not to talk about issues directly related to a company’s business. These days, everything is on the table. To determine whether a senior executive should address a political topic, Kyle suggested:
- First, get a sense of what’s important to your key stakeholders (employees, vendors, and your investor community).
- Don’t use polling to determine whether or not to respond. Instead, use it to anticipate challenges and select which stakeholders are interested in your message. For instance, corporate social responsibility is an interesting topic for consumers, but not for investors.
- Anticipate reactions and counter-reactions to your possible positions on issues of public concern. This gives you an advantage in the future when you may have to respond quickly.
Even though trust is at an historic low, Kyle encouraged us to help our executives and clients bridge gaps of understanding with conversation and continued dialogue. That’s how we add value and guide our employers and clients through this very extraordinary time.
Click here for more of Morning Consult’s data-driven insights on the most pressing issues in business, economics and politics.
Visit our Facebook page to replay the January 22 FridayForum with Morning Consult.