11: Empathize It: Lucy von Sturmer: Live from #websummit "Refining the Why of a Brand"

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What are the trends in today's digital space? What are the big brands, companies, and enterprises thinking about? It's clear that today, there's a strong call for transparency and true leadership. Today’s audiences expect more. We expect more from brands, governments, organizations, and leaders. In today's digital landscape, brands need to be deliberate in their communications and open to making changes that may challenge existing norms. Today's audiences are active participants and are seeking to promote, share, and be included. Where better to take the pulse of the tech leaders than Web Summit? According to Forbes Web Summit is “the best technology conference on the planet”; The New York Times says that Web Summit assembles “a grand conclave of the tech industry’s high priests.” The fact that the tech industry is discussing this topic inspired me. So, I quickly reached out to my colleague Lucy von Sturmer who is at Web Summit. At the Summit, Gail Heimann, President at Weber Shandwick stated "there's not a single conversation we have with a company today that isn't about purpose. Brands are being asked to define and defend their values like never before." Lucy's passion and 'high' from the Summit is very clear in our conversation. After discussing Google's approach to empathy and mindfulness in episode 10, my conversation with Lucy is logical. A Bit About the Guest Lucy started her career in the world of journalism, television, and PR in New Zealand. Then, seven years ago, moved to The Netherlands, joined global initiative Making All Voices Count where she worked for Dutch NGO Hivos as their global communications manager. After that, Lucy served as the Global PR Manager for MediaMonks, where she was brought on to create a global thought leadership strategy for the company to take forward. Over the years, she found her voice writing for publications such as The Huffington Post, Sustainable Brands, and Mumbrella on topics such as sustainable fashion, blockchain and the power of thought leadership. As her career developed, Lucy became increasingly convinced of the power of PR to drive social, cultural and environmental change. So in 2017, Lucy founded The Humblebrag, a strategic communications consultancy, to share this “superpower” with others (note: coolest name for a brand, ever?). The boutique consultancy champions change-makers and creative innovators, whose clients span creative agencies, innovative marketing companies, NGOs and multi-stakeholder initiatives. Today, Lucy works with an amazing team of purpose-drive individuals and together they design and execute PR campaigns, write compelling thought-leadership content, and secure effective media coverage across sectors. One of the many reasons I like Lucy is her passion. Her drive to make a difference is addictive. Like me, she comes from the NGO world and has channeled it towards changing the business industry. GREAT QUOTES FROM THE SHOW HR and marketing is the new synergy of companies. Arianna Huffington 50% of company reputation is decided by CEO You are the brand and people are thirsty for human interaction. Today, consumers and people are seeking to read quality thought leadership pieces. We’ve been criticized about women and the conference. Imagine if someone looks at your website in 5 years from now they will critique the makeup of the team. Why not have the conversation earlier? Based on a conversation Lucy conduction with Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten, CEO and co-founder of The Next Web. MORE ABOUT THIS SHOW On the episode, Lucy and I cover: The vibe at Web Summit 2018 After attending Web Summit, Lucy, what kind of change would you want to see companies implement? How are companies backing up their mission statements? The importance of digital transparency, especially at the CEO level. Listen closely because there's a lot of great insights and ideas. SELECTED LINKS FROM THIS EPISODE The Humblebrag | Breakfast with The Next Web Do you e

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