New guide promotes CEO videos as tool for strategic change

Brookings Institution Press and Olin Business School launch Innovations in Leadership book series

In this era of YouTube, Skype, iChat and v-casts, video is everywhere. And Jackson Nickerson, PhD, the Frahm Family Professor of Organization and Strategy at Washington University in St. Louis’ Olin Business School, says CEOs and managers can harness the power of video to lead and accelerate change within their businesses.

Nickerson is author of Leading Change in a Web 2.1 World, recently published by the Brookings Institution Press.

Leading Change in a Web 2.1 World introduces a web-based approach to communication that Nickerson calls “ChangeCasting.” It opens up a two-way street, linking the corner office and employees at every level of a company via frequent and focused brief video messages from the CEO and secured anonymous e-mail feedback from employees.

“Business strategies used to last upward of a decade,” Nickerson says. “Now, it’s not unusual to see changes in business strategy every two or three years.

“Communicating the need for change requires leaders who can build trust and create understanding within their organization. Using the latest technology with the principles and process of ChangeCasting facilitates the exchange of ideas that is necessary for strategic change,” he says.

Several major corporations have successfully integrated ChangeCasting into their management process. In his book, Nickerson discusses these examples, why leading change is difficult and how web-based tools are efficient and effective for leaders and organizations open to change.

Leading Change in a Web 2.1 World is a practical “how-to and know-why” guide, according to its author. It is written for busy managers to read on a two-hour flight who want to hit the ground running and apply the practical concepts in the workplace immediately. Nickerson says ChangeCasting works for companies of all sizes, public or private, and can be used by managers at various levels.


Leading Change in a Web 2.1 World is the first book in the series Innovations in Leadership from the Brookings Institution and distinguished faculty at the Olin Business School. Future titles will cover topics such as negotiation, repairing trust and critical and creative thinking. Each volume will be concise, accessible, action-oriented and focused on current leadership challenges and research-based solutions.

Nickerson is a Brookings nonresident senior fellow in governance studies and director of Brookings Executive Education. He also is editor of Brookings Press’ new Innovations in Leadership Series.

Nickerson is available for interview. ISDN and Vyvx lines are available for recorded or live broadcast.