Truth on Trial Sneak Peek with Major Garrett, Chief White House Correspondent for CBS News


Doug Simon, CEO of DS Simon Media and Host of Truth on Trial: Implications for Communicators – Ethics and the Collapse of Institutional Trust and Major Elliott Garrett, Chief White House Correspondent for CBS News meet for a quick discussion leading up to #TruthonTrial, a live event and webcast. Major Elliott Garrett shares his opinion about how C-suite leaders should approach getting their business involved in the social and political discussions.

Join the FREE live discussion on June 13th as Doug Simon CEO of D S Simon Media, Ty Cobb Former Special Counsel to the President, Richard W. Painter, Former White House Chief Ethics Counsel, Andrew McCarthy Contributing Editor at The National Review, Major Elliott Garret Chief White House Correspondent for CBS News, Richard Levick Chairman & CEO of LEVICK,  Peter Nicholas, White House Reporter at The Wall Street Journal and other top talent in the legal, communications and media professions to share their best advice on navigating this changing world of ethics. Register for the FREE webcast here.


DOUG: We see a trend towards corporations taking a stronger stand on issues and there’s data out there that says that buyers customers want companies to stand up. Do you think that’s going to continue and do you have any recommendations for say CEOs or CMO’s how they should approach that. Because it’s a tricky landscape.


GARRET: It’s a very tricky landscape. You can get a lot of feedback on one side of an issue and you can see it maybe in social media, and you can see it charted, and you can believe that maybe there might even be polling data out there that’s reinforcing. Then you make a corporate decision and then you suddenly find out there was all this other surface tension beneath the surface or subsurface tension rather, where a larger portion of your customers haven’t either been thinking about it, or once they do think exactly the opposite. And so you might have thought “well we were writing something in a positive direction. It’s going to be a net gain for us and see a blowback from your customer base that you couldn’t see and couldn’t anticipate.” I mean there is a whole body of thought and it’s I believe still taught in business schools, ethics of business corporate responsibility so on and so forth. I really think from that and this is this is a C-Suite issue. This is the corporate executive level and the board of directors what are your core values. And what are they? What do you do to reinforce them? And are you willing to live by them? And advertise them as those core values? You can’t have 700 core values. You can’t you can’t maybe even have seven what are they? And identify yourself with those and reinforce them because at that point as in politics as in anything else you gain and reassert credibility.


But if you try to-I mean this is this is an old adage it’s almost a cliché-if you try to be all things to all people you’ll never succeed. And even a company that we know very famously makes a lot of coffee all over the world. Again, back to my original observation-does a lot of things great. One incidence, one episodes of significant importance-inconsistent with the core values or just separated from training and those values.  It wasn’t even separate from the values. It was a misallocation of training in relation to those values can create an enormous concern a stock shuddering a moment. And you have to shut the company down for a day to reattach people to those core values.


So I would say and I’m not I’m not in any position to give advice other than to say – values matters how you communicate them matters how you train them internally, and a sense of discipline about all those, meaning is probably better than more.


DOUG: Awesome. Thanks so much for your time. Take a moment out of your vacation to join us here. Very appreciative of it.