Company cultures are running on fumes: should we return to the office?

By Guy Corbet, Fourteen Forty

We’ve learned an awful lot about working from home.  It has given many people the freedom to combine work with more family time.  It has been the miracle that has kept the economy spluttering on through the lockdowns.   

Many now don’t want to go back to the old normal drudgery of commuting to the office. 

In the cold light of day, and in the long run, will that position really be possible to maintain?  And are we seeing that company cultures are already running on fumes? 

Weak Links #10: getting back to business

How should business prepare for 2021?

The vaccine is enabling politicians, business and the public to contemplate a return to normal.  But, as the Chancellor says, “the economic emergency is just beginning”.

So, how can businesses and brands adapt to and benefit from the changes in consumer behaviour? What should they do to prepare their people and their workplaces for the return?  How can we tackle late payments for good?

We hope you enjoy this edition of Weak Links and we wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

The return to the office

By Katie Simpson, managing director, corporate affairs and financial, of global recruitment firm Hanson Search

There has been much discussion about how the business world, will change following Covid. There is a wide consensus that when we return to normal, we, well…won’t. In short, there is now effectively no normal to return to.

How “conversational commerce” will be on the rise in the run up to Christmas

By Laura Beaumont, PR manager, at tech firm Infobip

Brands want to develop closer connections with their customers, especially during biggest shopping event of the year. 

One way they can do this is to have real-time conversations with customers they want to sell to.  This has become known as “conversational commerce”, and it is easy for a business to misjudge it.    

Six steps to prepare for the recovery

By Guy Corbet, Fourteen Forty

GCSurvival has been the name of the game, but it is not an end game.

For many firms, the main focus so far has been to batten down the hatches in the face of rising uncertainty.

It is time to start rebuilding.  Gradually, the economy will start to splutter back into life.  We will be at the foot of a tall mountain.

Is the content bubble about to burst?

By Diane Banks, CEO of literary, broadcast and speaking agency Northbank Talent Management

Diane BanksMany of us have read about the $17bn which, pre-C19, Netflix had allocated to spend on content this year, projected to rise to $26bn by 2028 (source: Variety).

They were not alone.  Disney allocated $2.5bn to launch Disney.  Apple $6 billion for Apple TV+ in its first year.  AT&T more than $2bn for its forthcoming streaming service, HBO Max.  Comcast’s NBCUniversal set aside $2 billion to fund the first two years of its new streaming service, Peacock.

Weak Links #7: free speech, silence, corporate citizenship, diversity

“Weak Links?”

In 1973 Stanford Professor Mark Granovetter’s “the strength of weak ties” argued that weak links, between people with different opinions, help new and unfamiliar ideas spread.

Silence is golden in an age of sharing

By Amy Watt, founder, Megawatt Coaching 

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As we settle into self-isolation, silence is likely to become a bigger part of our lives. A little understood virtue in communications, those who harness its power are often on the front foot in their careers and their counsel. 

Ever found yourself in a one-sided conversation about a project, with little chance to speak or ask a question?  If so, you’re not alone.  We comms people are often in overdrive, with many meetings, tasks and priorities.

Weak Links #5: digital campaigning, immigration, neoliberalism, business indices

“Weak Links?”

In 1973 Stanford Professor Mark Granovetter’s “the strength of weak ties” argued that weak links, between people with different opinions, help new and unfamiliar ideas spread.