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Jack Dorsey on PR for Twitter's CEO search
On Jun 22, 2015, at 10:47 AM, Jack Dorsey wrote:
I'd like to have this retro sooner rather than later, and that it consider today's event.
This unfortunately has done a few things we have to now consider. It puts me at odds with the board. It really underscores the interim nature rather than highlighting that I'm here to serve as CEO and we aren't pausing anything, focus on the building service until we have a permanent CEO to announce. And it really took away all the positive momentum we finished last week (which was entirely focused where it should be, on the service we are building, instead of on individuals).
Now is the time to really streamline our execution and communication, from company to board. Have to be extra thoughtful. Which is why I think it's critical to understand how we think we are doing.
On Jun 22, 2015, at 11:18 AM, Vijaya Gadde wrote:
I started a document on the retro (which doesn't include today's announcement yet), but haven't had a chance to finish it. Would appreciate any feedback on the direction and who you would like to help us with the evaluation.
On Jun 22, 2015, at 11:58 AM, Peter Currie wrote:
[REDACTED] George suggested I add a tweet to the release this morning which struck me as a bad idea (he subsequently agreed).
2. I dont think we are being clear about which constituencies we are addressing, and we should have a strategy in mind for these three: employees; investors; advertisers. Perhaps a fourth is the user, or whichever groups consumer info about our product releases. Because we havent kept these groups in mind, I worry that we are sending some wrong messages, or at least some wrong timing (eg, search press release on Day 1 of Cannes).
3. I'm doing my best to communicate within the board about what the search committee is up to, and what I think our positioning and steps are. I'm getting very little feedback. I'll happily adjust course if feedback is provided ahead of a deadline!
4. Good PR is planned as a sequence; we have been doing PR like a one-at-a-time firecracker. The next big PR event is the third quarter call in four weeks. We should (a) plan the messages in that call; (b) work backward and figure out what sequence of other news we should be releasing (eg, product plans; features; a "win" coming out of Cannes; etc).
5. I will try to address the 6 big investors (as previewed) in 1:1 meetings and calls. Point of those meetings is (a) put a face on the board and (b) solicit input re search, and also communicate some messages that have been garbled, eg, the point made in earlier baord memo about Jack being fully in charge, not having lame duck period; trying to defuse (or at least diffuse) the issue of too many past ceo's on the board.
6. We do seem to have a coordination problem. An old (incorrect) version of the press release went out this morning.
This week I will be at Twitter on Tuesday meeting with opcomm; I will be meeting with the search committee & Spencer Stuart team on Weds to kick the search into gear; and I expect to be going to NY/Bos or Baltimore to meet w investors on Thu & Fri. If you two set up a call to discuss PR and if you want me on it, let me know. Time permitting, I can meet with George Sard on Thurs or fri early morning, but I dont want to confuse any messages you guys are giving him (so please consider that meeting as taking place only if you'd like me to do that).
On Jun 22, 2015, at 12:47 PM, Jack Dorsey wrote:
Thank you Peter. This frankness is fantastic. I of course take ownership in this as well.
I have 3 immediate priorities when I start on the first:
1. Focusing OpComm and company. Off to a good start but in all my conversations through org so far the biggest ask is more clarity on who owns what and accountability to that. A lot of simple practices will help here. Going to show a bunch of gaps and things we need to consider ending.
2. Earnings and resetting (and making more cohesive) our story. We need to nail this.
3. Recruiting a CMO. The product is getting there. We need marketing help to get people to it with the right understanding and expectation.
I'd like to have earnings prep and crafting 3 times a week with periodic check-ins with board until the date.
But, all in all, we need one story to come out of Twitter, Inc and right now I don't feel we are set up to do that well.
[This document is from In re Twitter Inc. Securities Litigation (2021).]
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