Oct 04, 2018
It’s been an exciting and busy New York Advertising Week. In case you missed our sessions Transforming Miss America and The Empathy Gap, below is a recap
Transforming Miss America: The View from Backstage
Over the past months, Miss America and Y&R have taken on the challenge of rebranding a 97-year-old organization in a moment of cultural reckoning. From getting rid of swimsuits to reimagining the entire competition, the Miss America Organization and Y&R set out to align the organization with its original purpose: empowering smart, talented women.
Leslie Sims, CCO of Y&R North America, Regina Hopper, CEO of Miss America and Nia Franklin, Miss America 2019 spoke with New York Times COO, Meredith Kopit Levien for a behind-the-scenes look into the journey towards a new Miss America organization.
Here are our key quotes and takeaways from the panel:
Regina Hopper, CEO, Miss America Organization
Leslie Sims, CCO, Y&R North America
Nia Franklin, Miss America 2019
The Empathy Gap
Chief Strategy Office Yusuf Chuku presented Thinking About Feeling exploring how can we be deliberate in our approach to empathy. Yusuf launched his discussion stating “Not caring is at the heart of the bad communications out there.”
He then explored the state of empathy outlining:
The latter half of Yusuf’s discussion focused on examples and ways people can work to reach their empathy potential. He said, “We are not doing it in as deliberate a way as we can. Empathy is a skill that needs to be practiced.”
He cited organizations such as Roots of Empathy and Human Library that are working to connect people in various ways to learn to recognize emotions, engage with others and practice consciousness and compassion.
He also provided a few tips for ways anyone to practice this skill including exercises such as Helicopter View (a perspectives exercise worksheet); Head, Seen, Respected (a deep listening exercise); and The Empathy Toy (teamwork and collaboration tool). He also cited a favorite exercise of our eXploring team – talking with Uber drivers.
Responding to a question on the role of empathy when today’s audience are trying to tune out advertising he shared, “Start from a place where people love brands, they can be open to us. Brands create things people are willing to consume. There is an exchange - we have to give them something back. If you going to be a guest in someone’s home, don’t come empty-handed.”
Yusuf closed the session cautioning to be careful not to overdo empathy. “It’s important to remember you occasionally have to turn it off.”