While over half (63 percent) of Romanian CEOs responding to an EY survey said they were present on social media, only 44 percent of C-suite executives and 46 percent of non-executive staff said they were aware of their CEO’s presence in social media. The most popular platform is LinkedIN (67 percent), followed by Facebook (61 percent) and considerably lower, Twitter (16 percent), according to the EY survey.
Additionally, 44 percent of the 320 respondents to the study stated that the CEO of the company they work for rarely posts on social media, once every few months, while 29 percent say that they have a very active CEO, who posts once or twice a week. “Romania is a country with a leadership culture still marked by the imprint of transition. Resistance to the type of transparency and openness implied by digitalization and social media is visible especially among company leaders who’ve spent their first years of professional formation in the centralized economy,” said Elena Badea, EY Romania marketing director.
In terms of the CEO’s social profile, 64 percent of the respondents believe that it is marked by what the online press writes about him or her. Nevertheless, just 19 percent of company executives consider that the CEOs social media activity is what defines his or her ‘social brand’, adds the study.
The content posted by business leaders appears more credible only to 14 percent of the respondents, with 38 percent giving more weight to the CEO’s comments cited by online media and 35 percent to the CEO’s posts on the company website. Company leaders’ posts are mainly business-related or industry specific according to 61 percent of respondents, with 48 percent saying that the CEO posts information about the company and only 33 percent stating that they post leadership content. Over half of the respondents say that the CEO of the company they work for manages their own social media accounts.
Customers (74 percent), investors (44 percent) and the general public (43 percent) are the three most important audiences respondents think CEOs have in mind when posting on social media, with only 27 percent thinking they have targets in mind and 29 percent thinking CEOs have prospective employees in mind, adds the study.
When assessing the impact of the CEOs participating in social media, the main perception among respondents is that company leaders who do not communicate through social media channels will become less relevant in the digital era. “Human interactions have changed definitely with the evolution of the digital channels. That’s why, the interactions between business leaders and company audiences can no longer avoid this logic of real time transparent communication. The ‘ivory tower’ has been completely dismantled with [the appearance] of social networks. We now live in the era of H2H – human to human business,” said Oana Gorbanscu, EY Romania corporate communication officer.