The Rising CCO

August 2012

Nearly two-thirds (65 per cent) of global chief communications officers (CCOs) say that crisis management experience is today’s prerequisite for success. This requirement has nearly doubled since 2007, when 33 per cent said the same. These findings come from the annual survey, The Rising CCO IV, conducted by global executive search firm Spencer Stuart and global public relations firm Weber Shandwick. Conducted from January to March 2012, the survey examined the roles, responsibilities and opinions of chief communication officers, with participants of the survey coming from companies based in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America. The majority of respondents work in global Fortune 500 companies. Considering that more than 70 per cent of global chief communications officers report that their companies experienced a threat to their reputations in the past two years, it is not a surprise that 65 per cent of CCOs say improvement in corporate reputation is their highest priority (below left). Crisis comes at a high cost to organisations that deal with them – most CEOs (74 per cent) spend time on the resolution. It takes approximately 15 months to get past the problem and such crises beget a host of other issues, such as more media scrutiny (60 per cent), more governmental scrutiny (51 per cent) and reduced employee morale (42 per cent). Just four in 10 CCOs are confident that their companies are prepared to deal with a social media-based threat. While this is an improvement from 2010’s preparedness level (33 per cent), it still accentuates a high level of discomfort with the lurking risks in social media (below left). Probably for this reason, CCOs rank social media as their top challenge in the year ahead. Taken from The Rising CCO IV, Spencer Stuart and Weber Shandwick

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