Technology & Social Media

Social media and the role of the chief executive

Communicate. Connect. In-form. Collaborate. Learn. Inspire.

Communicating and connecting to your team, customers and prospective customers. In-forming (in the Tom Friedman / "World is Flat" notion). Collaborating. Learning. Inspiring people. This why I do social media and every CEO should think about adding this to their tool set.

I still remember vividly the response from members of Marriott's Finance and Accounting team when I asked them for their perspective on their CEO, Bill Marriott, and his blog, Marriott on the Move. They said they felt more connected to the company than ever and that his blog helped them understand the view from the top. 

I had my own epiphany while attending an MACPA CFO conference. I overheard one of our team at the registration table engaged in a conversation with a CFO about lean accounting. She had never opened an accounting book, much less heard of lean, or so I thought. When I asked her where she heard about it, she said, "Oh, it was on our blog."

These are some of the stories I shared with my fellow CEOs at the CPA-SEA mid-winter meeting. This post is for them (and any other CEOs interested in social media). 

Consider the MACPA Beach Retreat, where we had a session in leadership and extended the conversation from a classroom of 35 to 45,600 people around the world, including several leading authors (Tom Peters and Emmanuel Gobillot).

Also consider the Forbes article "Social Power and the Coming Corporate Revolution," which shows a dire future for organizations that reject social media (and its consequences) for the old school command-and-control methods.

Bottom line: It is time for CEOs to embrace social media and start rethinking how these tools can help them shape their organizations in a much more human way. We are moving from command and control to connect and collaborate, from PUSH to PULL.

Social Media for CEOs View more presentations from Tom Hood Still not convinced? In The Corporate Blogging Book, Debbie Weil has this quote from Jonathan Schwartz, former CEO of Sun Microsystems:

“In ten years, most of us will communicate directly with customers, employees, and the broader business community through blogs. For executives, having a blog is not going to be a matter of choice, any more than email is today.”


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