This week sees the return of our parliamentarians to the hallowed corridors of Westminster after a pretty tumultuous summer recess. Nobody can deny that while they have been away things have changed fundamentally in our society and that politics is clearly not business as usual. The purpose of this blog is not to rant and rave about the state of UK politics and our politicians, or demand a new type of political system. Both are well trodden subjects that will run forever, but let’s highlight and question the role of the collective Cabinet approach that we are now witnessing after decades of kitchen Cabinet government.
Why is this important and what the hell does it have to do with branding? Directly probably not very much but indirectly and specifically to our approach and viewpoint at The Cabinet Agency we are strong believers and advocates for collective Cabinet thinking. For the past 3 Prime Ministers of this country, the idea of a collective Cabinet has been an anathema. Many people have only known governments run by ‘chumocracy’ where all decisions and visions for the country were born out of a few select individuals. This approach allows for an ease in setting the message but great difficulty in managing it, both internally and externally.
At The Cabinet and in relation to branding we believe that there is much more to learn by operating in an environment where we are informed by the widest array of viewpoints who share totally different approaches to life. While we agree that the very best brands are created around compelling single-minded ideas, the way that they operate and interact with their employees and consumers needs to reflect an understanding and empathy beyond its own world. Brands, like people, should change to reflect society and should lead this change by not being so set in their ways with a static perspective. Change is a sign of progress and confidence, and only by being part of a ‘big tent’ can we really see new opportunities and change in society that we tend to neglect at our own peril.
This view based on our governments return to collective cabinet decision making is not suggesting that we don’t need strong leadership when it comes to getting things done and affecting change, we do. We also need single-minded action to be effective but all we ask of brands and businesses, is to not build walls around themselves. They will be better off and stronger by being open and inquisitive. As a great man once said Democratic input, Autocratic output!
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