CEOs, beware of the 'yoga babble' trap

As many companies clean house at the executive level, a column from The New York Times' David Gelles reminds CEOs of the perils of lofty rhetoric without the shareholder value to back it up.

The most recent examples come from WeWork and eBay, where chief executives recently resigned due to poor financial performance, despite aspirations to "elevate the world's consciousness" and "make a bigger difference around the world," respectively.

Following the success of Google and Facebook — "do no evil" and "make the world more open and connected" — this kind of rhetoric and orientation toward sociopolitical issues has become expected of CEOs, Mr. Gelles writes. Many major corporations recently issued a statement that people and communities should be just as important as profit.

However, Mr. Gelles reminds executives that they need to deliver value or link high-minded missions directly to value. "People's radar for yoga babble is on high alert right now," New York University professor Scott Galloway told The New York Times.

This is likely because high-profile cases like Peloton, "an innovation company transforming the lives of people around the world," and Uber, which seeks to "ignite opportunity by setting the world in motion," have both lost share value despite their goals, Mr. Gelles notes.  

Read the full column here


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