Partisan Activism 101 for Investors and Executives


This post is by David from David Teten's blog


You care passionately about certain political causes. How can you use your professional influence to help create change?

When your grandchildren ask you, “What did you do during the craziness of 2020?”, how will you answer them?   

Reid Hoffman, cofounder of Linkedin, writes:

Traditionally, CEOs … have tried to avoid mixing business and politics, perhaps because of the fear that the latter would harm the former. Back in the 1990s, basketball star Michael Jordan refused to endorse a Democratic candidate for governor of his home state of North Carolina, saying, “Republicans buy shoes too.” But in 2020, this traditional approach seems both outdated and untenable. The most important issues that affect every business – the Covid-19 pandemic, widespread protests against racism, and the presidential election – are, or have become, undeniably political.

My answer to my children is that in 2020 I became much more politically active. I’m an investor with very limited time, but I also have experience and a network that I didn’t have as a young person. At the same time, I have friendships with people from all parts of the political spectrum, and don’t want to unnecessarily alienate anybody. 

I started by becoming more politically active in a non-partisan way; I wrote up how I approached this in How Non-Partisan Business Leaders Can Help Fix America. However, if you’re comfortable taking stances on issues that are more partisan in nature, there’s a lot more you can do. I couldn’t find any good resources online (Read more…)