Face it: the world of corporate communications is pretty unimaginative and bland. It could use some rejuvenation. And now, this is possible thanks to the cutting-edge communications techniques used by the ranting Commander-in-Chief Donald Trump.
No need for any more staid, predictable, stage-managed shareholder meetings and sincere-sounding Letters from the CEO. Corporate communications professionals should take charge and re-design their annual shareholder’s meeting, shareholders’ letters and even corporate earning guidance notes to the equity analysts who follow your corporation using the new, proven Trump communications style. This is the chance to make your corporation great again.
All of those staid, canned types of communications now can be pushed aside. Coming from someone who used to write letters to shareholders of a large bank’s mutual fund company without any major input from the fund company’s CEO, I can tell you the Trump approach opens the gates to innovative approaches never allowed before in corporate America. Forget the Compliance Department. Those people just dwell in cubicles waiting for their next vacation. You can also disregard those numerical typos in earnings guidance notes? A few zeros are a technicality. After all, if the President of the United States sets the tone for the nation, it can certainly be followed by the nation’s top corporations.
Corporations will benefit from using Trump’s cutting-edge executive communications style. It can make your corporation great again.
If you want to avoid having a double standard between the behavior of the nation’s top executive and CEOs of corporations, than corporations should just lower their standards until they meet those of the Commander-in-Chief.
Let’s take the case of lying. A recent study found that about 60% of what Trump says is lies and 78% are “mostly false.” This is why your CEO now can say with a straight face that sales are up 80% year over year, and that you are acquiring competitor companies in China and Japan. Does this have to be true? Well, those places are pretty far away and chances are no one will find out for a while. Besides, those details are for someone else to figure out.
How about that new factory you are definitely building in Ohio that will immediately need 900 new workers starting at $30 an hour? It will be opened in the next few months. Just don’t tell anyone you are operating on lunar Chinese and Mayan sunspot-based calendars. But whenever the new place opens, everything it makes it will be Made in America, regardless of where it really is made.
And what about those nerdy, pointed-head Chartered Financial Analysts (CFAs) who always comb through your corporation’s financials looking for bad news? Of course, they are the enemy of all shareholders. Don’t tolerate any more of their fake news. Only allow earnings surprises on the upside. If you don’t like any analysts, such as when analyst Marvin Roffman of Janney Montgomery Scott in 1990, found that Trump’s Atlantic City Taj Mahal casino bonds were worse than junk bonds, Trump just got the man fired. Not surprisingly, no one said a word. This can work for you, too. And when you fire the corporations’ critics, just say “they left for a better opportunity.” Your HR Department will certainly understand.
Or better yet, for real macho corporations, follow the approach used by corporations in Michael Clayton, Erin Brokovich, or the true story of Karen Silkwood and go for the lethal goon squads that kill opponents who sought to protect innocent citizens from polluting corporations.
Corporations Will Benefit From Trump’s Style
Corporations would benefit from employing Trump’s cutting-edge executive communications style. After all, many of these are the nation’s top 100 corporations, which all happen to be the largest contributors to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; the group that has consistently opposed anything that benefits average citizens.
This would certainly benefit companies like Exxon. At their next shareholder meeting, the Exxon CEO can say they have never polluted anything. That thing in Alaska in 1989 was overblown. The birds covered in black stuff had just flown through a dust storm. The dead fish and seals got muddied in their annual migration. Or, if that does not go over well, the new Secretary of State (Rex Tillerson, formerly CEO of Exxon) can issue a gag order, erase a web site or maybe organize an invasion of the offending state that has the most non-believers to the Exxon message.
How about Monsanto and Dow-Chemical? Monsanto can say its seeds changed themselves because they were left in storage for too long. But that is not ideal since it would get them in trouble with the
creationists who deny evolution. Exxon could also object since they would have to say oil came from aliens and not dead plant life that existed at the time of dinosaurs. Why? Because creationists say there never were dinosaurs. And what about Dow Chemical’s pollution in India that killed thousands of innocent people? That was fake news.
And what about Citibank, Bank of America or Goldman Sachs? Numbers are for nerds and they cannot be trusted anyway, so just tell average Americans to open more checking accounts and invest their 401(k) money in the banks’ mutual funds. Price rigging for LIBOR, foreign currencies, money laundering or creating fake mortgage derivatives? All those were overblown by the ungrateful, pesky media. Anyway, the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule means nothing and even the Commander has never released his tax returns, so why bother with quarterlies anyway? Firing entire corporate accounting departments would save shareholders billions.
But there’s more. If your CEO gets a pointed question from some snoopy, elderly shareholder, ignore it. Tell them to shut up or sit down or better yet, have them pulled from the room. Then, have the security people grab the cells phones from other pesky shareholders so there is no record of the event.
These are all new opportunities for senior corporate communications specialists who are paid six digits a year to turn out one-sided propaganda about their benevolent employers. But now, corporate communicators can break loose from those straight-laced confines. Swing for the fences. Don’t take any crap from equity analysts, independent board members, the financial media and shareholders. Trump has set a new standard, so adopt it. It’s obviously working for him.
So at your next board meeting, start if off with the Lord’s Prayer as the First Lady did in Melbourne, Florida. Opening remarks should be made under a billboard-size photo of Father Charles Coughlin or some Grand Wizard next to your corporate logo. That should get the public’s attention. It’s a new world. Corporate America should have the guts to adapt. Go for popular opinion at any cost. Don’t be afraid to show your true colors. If you hate unions, paying for health care and the minimum wage, say so. If you hate to reveal conflicts-of-interest when selling financial products, say so. Get Trumped.