CEO lack of engagement is a major issue for business growth


CEO lack of engagement in communications is a major issue for business growth

Whilst 95% of CEOs claim to engage with marketing, 42% of CMOs disagree

New research commissioned by communications agency Speed has outlined the perception gap that exists for Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) when looking to engage their CEO. Whilst 95% of Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) claim to work effectively with marketing, 42% of CMOs still say that they struggle to keep their CEO involved in communications.

Despite the initial view of these CEOs, and the fact that 84% do believe that external communications is critical to business growth, the research further supports the gap that exists, with 70% of CEOs providing a range of reasons for not engaging their CMO and only half (50%) of them meeting regularly with their CMO or involving them in board and strategy sessions.

Lack of time was the most common reason given by CEOs for not engaging, highlighted by some of the comments provided within the survey responses. However, this appears to hide other obstacles. For some respondents, these included low perceived importance and relevance and, lack of interest and respect for marketing and communications.

The research which surveyed 250 CMOs and 250 CEOs across a range of businesses in the UK has highlighted further the challenges that exist for CMOs looking to support change and growth through a robust communications program.

Laura Tallett, Director Business & Corporate, Speed: “CEOs are key to business engagement, and we know that the most respected or disruptive businesses – the likes of Uber, Virgin, Airbnb – are those who put communications at the board table, and are marketing led, driven by an engaged leadership team.

“The research further validates the challenge that exists for CMOs and it is crucial that we find a way to demonstrate the power of communications and build understanding, respect and ultimately engagement with CEOs and their leadership teams. Marketing and communications should be at the board table to support the commercial aspirations of any business.”

Laura added: “We must get the message out there and work hard as an industry to ensure businesses understand the importance of this function in supporting business growth. Given the economic uncertainty being felt by business at the moment it is important that communications, more than ever, is leading the business agenda and developing new opportunities to engage customers and identify new markets.”

For more information and a white paper on this topic, please go to:



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