But the CEOs don’t know that. Their harried communications leaders present them with tweets and comments, and they have no sense of context. It’s words on a “page.” Could be in the New York Times or on CNN for all they know. It’s bad stuff on the screen, with the potential to prompt reputational harm, causing the stock price to plummet. And they panic.
Most CEOs lack the moral courage to hold their ground. Because they know, deep down, that they aren’t do-gooders, and they don’t want that curtain lifted. So they kowtow to the very vocal minority — the scant few employees marching outside of headquarters or emailing the head of Human Resources. These CEOs are frauds and have no actual courage.
The gutsy stance — tilting at windmills and fighting injustice — is a just a persona, a public facade, a wealth-generating marketing strategy. They love money, and they fear the angry mob because that mob may interfere with their ability to produce inter-generational private-plane wealth. They want to make as much money as possible, but they want everyone, including their kids and their kids’ cohort, to think that they really just want to make a difference in the world. “Oh gee, aw shucks, I happened to make gazillions of dollars. But that’s just ’cause I’m really, really good at heart.”
Excerpted with permission from the book “Levi’s Unbuttoned: The Woke Mob Took My Job But Gave Me My Voice” by Jennifer Sey, out Nov. 15 from All Seasons Press. All rights reserved. For more information about the book, go to levisunbuttoned.com