Walter vs. Mike

Walter Cronkite was one of the greatest broadcasters of all time. He was authentic and trusted and believed, and he had a huge amount of influence.

Mike Bloomberg is the Mayor of New York. His job is not to be a public speaker or even to spread his ideas. His job is to make New York work–to get people to come, to visit, to start businesses, to go to school. To make the city appealing and functional.

Standing on a corner in New York today, it occured to me that many businesses and most big brands are stuck on being Walter. In fact, I think they need to be Mike. Starbucks works when it’s like a functioning city. So do consulting firms, talent agencies, factories and supermarkets.

It’s hard to be a mayor. You don’t get to be in charge, really. You can help set the table, and then get out of the way and let the village/city function the best you can.