🏢 Why are BestBuy and Uber CEOs listening to the frontlines? Can authenticity win you customers and a lame try make you a meme?

BestBuy and Uber CEOs left the boardroom and went out into the frontlines. Bumble's CEO took her kid to the IPO. Is CEO authenticity more than a trend?

If you saw the latest quest of Mark Zuckenberg trying to do something authentic to celebrate the 4th of July, you might forget other CEOs do it differently. They want to understand their companies by going into the frontlines, working just like their customers do, or making fun of themselves.

Uber - Out of the boardroom and onto the streets.

Dara Khosrowshahi swapped the HQ for some bicycle delivery hours around San Francisco. Dara got some traction on social media by doing so, but he also replied to some comments. Sharing the details of his trips, median earnings, and most data any Uber Eats delivery person sees on their screen also added to Dara’s credibility or being criticized for not being fast enough. Yet, with one tweet, he and Uber’s team got some good points for employer branding and plenty of insights from drivers who generally do not share their earning screens on social media.

BestBuy - Be Human, listen to the frontlines

When Hubert Joly took the helm of BestBuy, everyone, including his friends, said he would face a hard battle to turn “The Blockbuster of Electronics” into a severe Amazon competitor. Fast forward to this day, and BestBuy not only survived but it has increased its revenue to a whopping $50 billion/year. Meanwhile, Hubert Joly’s management style was so credible that it earned him a book deal with Harvard Business Review - The Heart of Business.

The secret? Instead of listening to consultants from all top companies, he decided to do something else:

Essentially, everything I learned when I was in business school, at McKinsey, in my early years as an executive was either wrong, dated or incomplete.
Listen to the frontlines. They have all the answers.

Today, Hubert Joly is out, but the company is doing well and is run by Corie Barry, who was the CFO during his tenure.

So is the chauffeur-driven CEO a thing of the past? When looking at the youngest billionaire CEO, Hopin’s Johnny Boufarhat, it seems so. Johnny gave an interview to the BBC, explaining why his own story could not make him tied to an office.

Another CEO breaking and the glass ceiling was Bumble’s Whitney Wold Herd, who took her child to companies' IPO and gave a week off to all staff.

After all, brands are human, and so are CEOs.