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This isn’t just an RNS, this is…

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This isn't just an RNS, this is...

More good news from Marks & Spencer today, the second profit upgrade in a few months, and a tip of the hat to the writer (s) of the RNS.

If we assume that Next offers the gold-standard in how to do releases to the stock market, today’s from M&S is not far behind.

For at least 20 years, M&S has flattered to deceive, offered promises on the future that were never delivered, while CEOs papered over cracks, took their bonuses and left the real work to the next guy.

The first words from present CEO Steve Rowe today are these: “Given the history of M&S we’ve been clear that we won’t overclaim our progress.”

And he’s got you right there. The pub version of what he just said is: “We’ve mucked this up so often you’d think I was stupid to start bragging right now.”

The rest of the RNS is equally good. Perhaps they have been reading how Next does it.

Anyone wanting to understand the business can read the statement and come away with a very good idea of where it is at and where management want to take it.

There are caveats (“wherever possible”), rather than brags.

The language sometimes veers into management speak and there’s the odd cliché (“hard yards”, “headwinds”) but perhaps that’s unavoidable.

There isn’t necessarily a link between good corporate comms and business success. They do seem to go together though.

Press release of the day

Pension funds are going to increase their use of ESG ratings agencies, says from SigTech.

No surprise there, the key bit is that two-thirds can’t interpret what the scores mean.

Daniel Leveau says: “Many investors struggle with ESG rating agencies which often assign wildly divergent ESG scores to companies. The divergence is attributed to how the rating agencies define and measure ESG performance.”

It’s a good point. There plainly needs to be consistency here.

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