Reputation revelations this week

imagesI can hardly keep up with all the reputation-related info that crosses my mind these days. Of course, I think everything is related to reputation in one way or another so it is hard to imagine a day without reputation overload. And now it is Saturday afternoon and I should be outside but I wanted to get some thoughts out on my blog. So here are just a few random thoughts and reputation revelations that happened this week: 1. I did a brief introduction to a panel this week for CECP (formerly known as the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy).  It was their 2013 CECP Summit: Ahead Together and they launched a new branding and strategic engagement model. We discussed these changes with Margaret Coady, Executive Director and Daryl Brewster, their new CEO.  Like all of us, they are changing with the times as "engagement" becomes critically important to the sustainability of an organization. In addition, emerging trends in Corporate Philantrophy were presented and everyone was excited to hear if giving had changed over the past year. What interested me was learning that giving has actually increased since the economic downturn. Median total giving spiked in 2012 to $35.30 million, approaching pre-recession levels. I was also particularly interested in their finding that companies have re-prioritized certain program areas and education has become the most popular program area.  The reason given is that educational giving is tied to creating a solid pipeline for employment. This can only be a good thing.

2. It was good to also have a conversation with Doug Conant, former CEO of Campbell Soup and now founder and CEO of Conant Leadership. We met about 10 years ago when we talked about CEO reputation and I recalled how intensely interested and up-t0-date he was onall things leadership. A true student of leadership. It was nice to see him since I still have the handwritten personal thank you note he wrote me after that meeting. Very memorable.

3. strategy + business had an article this week on Captains in Disruption.This off shoot article is related to their wonderful annual CEO transition survey they do every year. I will be reading that next. This year they took on the topic of whether CEOs are prepared for crises and truly disruptive events. I liked this statement from Clayton Christensen of Harvard who was explaining why top executives do not have access they need to make predictions about the future and where they will be courting disaster. He said, "“Data is heavy. It wants to go down, not up, in an organization. Information about problems thus sinks to the bottom, out of the eyesight and earshot of the senior managers.” So true. Problems when they reach top management are whispers although they begin as shouts at the bottom. Here is Booz & Co.'s advice in the article on planning for disruption:

1. The CEO is the single most critical player in crafting and carrying out a response.

2. It is critical to begin breaking down human inertia.

3. CEOs must make cogent decisions about the team of top executives.

4. It is important to choose a small team of top decision makers to lead the response.

Enjoy the day.