Breakfast Briefing: 5 things for PR pros to know on Thursday morning

C-suite dinosaurs are holding back communications; Joker director responds to concerns about film's violence.

Out-of-touch leadership is one of the biggest obstacles to external change for in-house PR pros, according to PRWeek and Boston University’s Communications Bellwether Survey. In-house PR pros understand the need to revolutionize their function, but they are being held back by corporate culture and the tone deaf "dinosaurs" running things, found the survey, which polled 1,633 in-house, agency and other practitioners. Check out the survey’s other findings.

Want to create a profitable business? Start with building a conscious brand based on an authentic purpose, according to Jessica Adelman, group VP of corporate affairs at Kroger. Adelman penned an op-ed for PRWeek explaining how Kroger is doing just that.

Joker director Todd Phillips responded to criticism of the film’s depiction of violence, at the New York Film Festival on Wednesday. "I thought, isn’t that a good thing, to put real-world implications on violence? Isn’t it a good thing to take away the cartoon element about violence that we’ve become so immune to?" Phillips said, adding that he thinks it is "very responsible to make it feel real and make it have weight and implications." Following the 2012 Aurora shooting during The Dark Knight Rises, the new film has spurred security cautions from the U.S. Army and various police departments throughout the nation.

North 6th Agency has upped Jim Morris to CFO. Morris previously served as the firm’s SVP of finance, a position he held since joining the firm in 2017. He will work alongside North 6th president Al DiGuido on the firm’s M&A and strategic partnerships, where he will be responsible for financial strategy, data and analytics, diligence and risk assessment to support these initiatives, according to a North 6th statement. Last month, North 6th hired Zignal Labs acting CMO Jordan Cohen as its first chief marketing officer. In 2018, the firm’s revenue grew by 17% to just more than $7 million, according to PRWeek’s Agency Business Report.

What not to do when seeking talent. Kickass Masterminds, a marketing company based in Austin, Texas, posted a PSA on its Instagram page including a photo of a recent job applicant in a swimsuit. Text over the image said, "Do not share your social media with a potential employer if this is the kind of content on it. I am looking for a potential marketer–not a bikini model." The photo was of Emily Clow, who had just applied for a marketing coordinator internship at the firm. She sent a screenshot of the post to the SheRatesDogs Twitter account, which tweeted the image. Kickass Masterminds has since taken down its social accounts, podcast page and website.

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