Beyond factionalism: Moxie’s strategy for authentic engagement in public affairs

Joe Libutti.

Factionalism in civic life continues to intensify, placing increasing pressure on leaders and organizations to cater to the demands of deeply divided communities. Beyond political partisanship, industries, brands and even facts have become artifacts of some factions while being diametrically opposed by others. Media outlets like FOX News and MSNBC perpetuate isolated partisan echo chambers. The mere mention of climate change activates loud voices and deaf ears. Similarly, the term “diversity” can spawn multiple viral social media posts, each for different reasons. These factions form around attitudes, opinions, perceptions, beliefs, trust in institutions, product preferences, media consumption, demographics and many other factors.

Without a solid grounding in quantitative expertise, leaders and organizations risk becoming part of the problem. They may find themselves metaphorically shouting in digital spaces, desperate to be heard, often amplifying the loudest voices even when these are not the most relevant. Alternatively, they might appear robotic or as empty vessels, focused solely on profits.

Consider the 2023 Bud Light debacle involving influencer Dylan Mulvaney. Instead of clearly defining the purpose of the partnership, the brand’s ambiguous response failed to address criticisms effectively, stoking frustration and mockery from all sides. Similarly, recent Ivy League congressional hearings were filled with lengthy discourse but little authenticity, resulting in executive departures and becoming fodder for a primetime bit on “Saturday Night Live.”

In today’s world, where communication is virtually limitless across an endless array of channels, adjusting values to meet the audience of the moment is no longer viable. Leaders and organizations must commit to core values that genuinely reflect their business model, the work they do, their customers and their employees.

At Moxie Strategies, we believe that quantitative expertise should drive authenticity. We use our focus on quantitative analysis not to let detached mathematical models and technology dictate what an organization’s values should be, but as a tool to break out of factional echo chambers. Our approach adjusts for the influence of the loudest voices, enabling organizations to maintain authenticity without fear. Moxie’s quant-first strategy provides leaders with the essential information, data, tools, expertise and narrative insight needed to truly understand what matters to their communities and how to make meaningful contributions.

Adopting a quant-first approach in public affairs allows leaders and organizations to focus on the people and communities that truly matter, rather than being sidetracked by the manufactured crises of the day. It enables us to discern what real people care about, not just what the revenue-driven media prioritizes. This method fosters genuine conversations and cuts through the noise created by influencers and social media personalities exploiting algorithms.

At Moxie, we use quantitative expertise not just to uncover true stories about real people, but to help you become a part of those stories in a valuable and authentic way. We offer unique depth of insight into the world around us and deliver bold impacts that empower leaders to contribute meaningfully. Join us.

Joe Libutti is senior vice president of research & analytics for Moxie Strategies.