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Navigating Regulatory Waters: Friend or Food? How To Stay Ahead in Financial Services

The following content is part of our fortnightly newsletter eDMs "Take A Beat Thursday" and was originally sent out on February 8th. If you'd like to join the list and get these in...

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How do you feel about Roe v Wade? I was speechlessly, and helplessly, angry and aghast. Here's a disturbing thought about what, maybe, you and I did to make this situation possible and what we might want to do differently now. 

Now that I've been forced, by my colleagues Christina Lu and Nicole Lambert, to get my act together and write something about it, I can't help thinking the same things I've heard from many of you. Thoughts like:

1. Shouldn't we have seen this coming?

2. Why didn't I, you, or people we see as leaders with more power, do something about it?

3. What next? I'm hearing LGBTIAQ+ rights, and contraception.

4. What about Australia... and the western world who look to the US?

5. What can I do? I feel like not much... plus it's not a thing our business should be involved in... right?

Wrong. Okay, here goes.  Some answers from where we sit.

1. We did see it coming.

The trajectory of this, and the emerging preconditions (like control over-reporting and the judiciary), were as predictable as the conclusion of a high school essay on the rise of fascism. Or populism. 

2. We thought this human right was someone else's responsibility to defend.

Or not a big deal for us personally. Right? Wrong as it happens. If we want to keep our human rights, it appears the price is the same as the price of peace. You don't need me to finish that sentence for you.

3. Well, yes. Very predictably. 

4. Yes, this will reverberate here and in other nations who respect the US for good reasons, if not this one.

5. Do something, anything.

Just not nothing. And yes, you need to think about this as a brand as well as a person.

I was so upset about this that I didn't raise it with my colleagues for fear we might not feel the same way. In actual fact, they were disappointed I was silent. As their leader they expected I'd be true to my colours and make sure the firm had a clear position. Just like Ukraine

In a world that contains countless tragedies, not everyone is equally affected by everything. This decision may have terrible consequences for people I don't know. Closer to home, young people I do know are prepared to do bad things online because they feel so disempowered, and so upset about what they see as a miscarriage of justice.

Maybe one price we'll pay collectively for inaction and silence, if that's our path, is good people will do bad things to balance the scales if leaders and brands are passive.

Yes, that might be social media vitriol. But if it extends, as it does now, to black hat tricks like credit card fraud against members of the US judiciary, then our silence is indirectly creating the preconditions for crimes to be committed. 

If we don’t do something and say something, if we don’t use democracy and all the reasonable means, we’re going to end up with unreasonable means being used.

In this country and the US, we've allowed politicians and other leaders to tell us that our better future relies on oppressing the rights of others. That's not new. In that story, enemies are helpful because the false dichotomy is an "us versus them" zero-sum game narrative. It's kind of "we can only survive if we damage other people because there’s not enough to go around."

That story needs to be seeded through willing news media and other channels. Then, as the author, and architect, you make sure there's a price for speaking out.

To immunise ourselves as individuals, as leaders with moral responsibility (not just a commercial one) and brands with ethics, we have to say, and or do, something.

Don’t be afraid to call out the bad stuff. Because the price of human rights is our human responsibility.


  • Don't just like a social post. Use your voice and speak your truth
  • Take proactive action in making your voice heard
  • Preserve your intellectual independence. Read quality journalism so you can be assured you're seeing several sides of a conversation and ask questions and dig deeper

What is one thing you'll do to take a stand?

I like the idea of getting ahead, not getting even, and not just getting angry.

If you’d like to discuss adjusting your communication strategy for the current times, please call us or fill out our contact form here. 

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