In a discussion of why founding partners Julianne Shinto and Alan W. Silberberg were launching this firm, it became all too easy to demonstrate their opposing views with both arriving from clearly opposing viewpoints, yet united in the commitment to provide a bipartisan approach for all of their clients. Twain Group brings an understanding that viable, working relationships are paramount to any forward movement and is proud to offer a comprehensive launch to every situation. The fact that their discussion led to an organic demonstration of why this works so well follows:
Marriage and Divorce in politics, and why that yin/yang is part of the DNA of Twain Group.
Marriage by Alan W. Silberberg
Partisan bickering and fighting have consumed North American politics and government for too long, particularly in the United States. This has led to intractable policy positioning on both side of the political aisle. Citizens deserve a far more serious dialogue but get nothing more than fighting. Like a marriage either you make it work thru compromise and trust; working together to build on solid foundations or it self- destructs.
For too long the parties in US have been at bitter ends. The result has been sky high debt, interest, as well as bloated governments that rely on outdated contracting systems in which the benefits flow only to the chosen few. The system encourages money to be spent almost no matter what, with checks and balances coming afterwards in most cases if at all. The parties enforce a strict “our way or the highway” internal discipline and therefore creative solutions and “out of the box” thinking are not only never achieved, but basically never allowed to have the place to happen.
The division of the parties creates structural changes to society based on ideological and sometimes even religious differences instead of looking at basic things like return on investment, and whether something makes sense or not. When people hate each other, and refuse to even to talk beyond cursory obligations the results are simply disastrous. When there is harmony and trust, the foundations of that create a process where not only can things get done, but the results can be limitless. When people put aside political differences and roll up their sleeves to solve common problems oftentimes the problems themselves become clearly seen as the previous differences between people.
When it comes to campaigning, the harsh, shrill one sided messages of those who carry their party’s nomination often dilute and indeed dissuade people from actually voting. We have become a country where elections, therefore all sorts of civic decisions have become the wasteland of the “fight over the marginal 1-2 percent.” Over 50% of people regularly do not actually vote in any election therefore do not participate; so elections have become manipulated often by interest groups with small issues at stake, but large pots of money to leverage. What is a candidate to do to reach out to the independent, non declared party affiliation voter? Or get the non voter to vote?
It is a simple proposition; that like a marriage, but one fully enveloped in its blanket of factors like a real one. In bringing together top strategists from both parties, we create a new paradigm at the cutting edge of the thought leadership for crisis communications and political branding. It addresses the political, strategic and human side all at once. This marriage is special, bringing together amazing talents from unique sides of human branding and message positioning – combining political and media training, speech writing and facial and gesture micro analysis with digital branding and digital crisis communications.
It combines the male/female, the ying/yang that is missing in the dialog that passes for the raging harshness that is our society now. Whether it is running for office, or polishing a message for the corporate suite, now your message is demanded in an instant form, and has to transcend the normal politics as usual and instead draw from both sides for the best ideas and deliver stunning results as well.
The marriage that is Twain Group is one based on foundational trust that both sides have important contributions and that together the results for clients make business as usual simply archaic. We bridge the digital and human worlds, and bridge the left and the right. One way highways leading to one way decisions are not allowed in our process.
Divorce by Julianne Shinto
After the buzz of forming a bipartisan firm died down and the backslaps turned into a questions of how exactly things worked, I found myself, yet again at odds with founding partner; Alan. Our intent has always been to bring a broader base of knowlege (i.e. the only logical solution to a problem that involves warring faction such as en election) but also a non-partisan approach for our non-political clients, an imprimatur so to speak, for those needing neutrality.
But as Alan sees us as a “marriage of ideas” I couldn’t help but think it more accurately a “divorce”, or at the very least a departure. With marriage comes the inevitable compromise, which in political terms means; one side is left unrepresented. And no part of me was interested in a diluted message or schooling my trusted clients in how to please everyone, even in, (or especially in) the electoral phase.
Last week, I attended my first democratic fundraiser since Diane Feinstein spoke to roomful of uber-wealthy Hancock Park Republicans in her attempt to garner the California gubernatorial race. In 1990 I agreed with everything she said, and was pretty vocal about it. But I later realized…ah, she was speaking to a roomful of uber-wealthy Hancock Park Republicans. No one could say Diane didn’t know her audience. Last week, candidate X greeted me with the self-promoting brilliance of how he uses one term to address one group and another term to address the opposition.
Brilliant? Snake was more what crossed my mind. And shortsighted that it wouldn’t occur to him that every single attendee munching eggrolls from paper plates might not be a groupie. And this was clearly not what my partner and I hoped to deliver as a bipartisan firm. Our goal was, yes, everything. Delivering every bit of information to our clients, the playbook from both sides, the end of a blind spot that so often cripples candidates conducting business as usual. And not hip tricks, which, in the instant example, would really only fool the base of the candidates using them. A departure from doing things our way, a divorce from hiring experienced captains to navigate unchartered waters and most of all, a refusal to engage in scorched earth policies no matter how big the bully on the other side of the flames.
And in speaking of that bully, while we will not likely agree on everything, it is that divergent approach that allows us to come together and best serve our clients, fully armed for both sides.