NEW YORK — With increased pressure on companies to engage in societal issues, Page has created a guide to help head communicators drive value for stakeholders, as well as society at large.

Page CCO Guide - Stakeholder Capitalism - 2022 explores stakeholder capitalism (which loosely means companies meeting the needs of all their stakeholders) and actionable strategies CCOs could use to successfully lead a multi-stakeholder approach to engagement.

“The pressure on companies is intense and increasing from investors, employees, consumers, NGOs, the whole range, to focus on issues related to societal values,” said Roger Bolton, president of Page (formally the Arthur W. Page Society). “The imperative for the companies is there.”

The guide delves into three ways companies can achieve stakeholder value: creating value for society at large through its core business; ESG; and corporate social strategy. That includes laying out steps to succeeding in each of those areas as well as case studies.

Getting is right is essential, said Bolton, as companies that don’t take actionable steps run the risk of being criticized for purpose-washing or empty platitudes.

Making sure that doesn't happen rightly falls on communicators as  “the CCO is the voice of the stakeholders inside the company and we bring that point of view" even if company leaders "sometimes don't want to hear it."  The reverse is true as well, as communicators are also the voices of their companies in communications with the public.

“We have to have the guts to speak up,” he said.