I was reading various blogs about CEO blogging in order to decide how best to answer the question of whether CEOs should blog. There are many different schools of thought about the topic. On one hand, some say that CEOs should be attending to customers and employees while others say that its the best way to communicate broadly and hear from your customers and employees. Both points are valid. I turned to Debbie Weill’s blog on corporate and CEO blogging and was directed to an insightful interview with Sun Microsystems CEO blogger Jonathan Schwartz with ZDNet Asia. Schwartz is one of the more famous and popular CEO bloggers. Schwartz says:
“The number one role of a leader is to communicate. And the number one role of a CEO is to be the chief communicator, to make sure that the people inside the organization know what is important, as well as our partner community and our customers and our shareholders. …I think press releases are Byzantine and antiquated. And I think what matters more is what Rich Green thinks about a change we made to our software strategy, so let us go look at what Rich says on his blog. That, to me, is a much higher fidelity communication instrument than simply a press release that you, as a journalist or a customer, will just throw away and say that’s just marketing.”
I like Schwartz’s call of blogging as high fidelity communications. No doubt about the impact on his blog on the reputation of Sun Microsystems. Schwartz is a great spokesperson for a high tech company and its industry. However, there are many industries in which CEO blogging might not make sense.