CMO Confidential: Episode 23 – Kim Whitler: Brands Taking a Stand on Social and Political Issues

A CMO Confidential Interview with Kim Whittler, business professor at the Virginia School of Business and former GM and CMO. Kim joins us for a second time on the red-hot issue of sociopolitical stands and describes why descriptive corporate research ignores consequences and trade-offs and is often wrong versus longer-term broader academic studies. Key topics include understanding the difference between “self interest” and “company interest,” simultaneously managing consumer, employee and investor constituencies, preventing dangerous groupthink, fiduciary responsibility, the complexity of truly knowing “the right” thing, the asymmetric risks of picking a side, and CMO’s that forget to represent their customers and investors. She shares many examples including Disney, Coke, Nike and Budweiser.

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