Aarti Shah 20 Oct 2020 // 8:18PM GMT
With the United States at such a critical inflection point — politically and economically— the technology sector increasingly finds itself to be the focal point of many of the emerging issues. More specifically, global has become a charged word that has complicated how technology companies communicate to stakeholders and a session at PRovokeGlobal explored why.
“I can understand why people consider global to be a dirty word and the main reason for that is the fruits of globalization have not percolated to the bottom half of society,” said Anita Gupta, head of global communications at DHL. “But at DHL, globalization is the reason we exist. Our growth and the jobs are because of globalization.”
Neby Ejigu, partner and director of marketing within technology at Finn Partners, added that many companies have “a phobia of the change and the impact of global and what that could mean for them today.”
The session, “Why has Global Become a Dirty Word? Communicating Innovation & Goodwill in Today's Complex Landscape” was sponsored by Finn Partners and also featured speakers from Marvell and LogicMonitor. The panel addressed navigating the thorny social issues that have come into focus, especially in the last few months and what that means for brands.
“One of the biggest frustrations and challenges is there’s the reactionary piece, that 'I need to say something to save my brand.' Then there’s the authenticity piece, 'I want to make a difference,'” Ejigu said. The authenticity comes through when companies move beyond the way they have been conditioned to talk about their industry or their company and focus on the humanizing connection, he added.
“The connection isn’t in the products and services you sell but in the value,” he said.
The conversation also looked at employee engagement, which has been a common thread during PRovokeGlobal as organizations are navigating the impact of the global pandemic, social unrest, economic uncertainty, and a chaotic political environment on their workforce.
“We’ve worked externally and internally to communicate our responses to the BLM protests and add our voice to the conversation and take a stand for something rather than remaining silent,” said Merrily McGugan, director of global brand and communications at LogicMonitor. “We’ve got involved in areas where we wouldn’t historically have been involved, and we’re communicating globally more than ever.”
“As a US headquartered global employer, inclusion is more important than ever and it can’t be one size fits all, it’s about managing relevance of communications to all employees on corporate topics,” said Stacey Keegan, VP of global corporate marketing and comms at Marvell. “I don’t think we’ll ever go back to normal from a communications perspective – our executives enjoy it because they are extremely connected to our employee base, and our employees love that we’re talking to them every day.”