January 6, 2001

Jack Covert Selects: Jack Covert Selects - The Cultural Creatives

By: 800-CEO-READ @ 4:57 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

The Cultural Creatives: How 50 million people are changing the world by Dr. Paul Ray & Dr. Sherry Ruth Anderson, Harmony Books, 350 Pages, $25.00 Hardcover, October 2000, ISBN 0609604678
As I have mentioned in past JCS's, I love to (as we used to say in the sixties) "turn people on" to new books, authors, or ideas. Last week, I received an email from a woman whose business savvy I really respect because she keeps her ear held solidly to the ground, listening for what is coming. In this email, she told me she had been at a conference the week before where a new book called The Cultural Creatives was all the rage.
This book is a fascinating study of a newly-discovered, rapidly-growing segment of the population the authors call "The Cultural Creatives." The authors are market researchers and opinion pollsters, and the data they used was acquired from thirteen years of survey research studies on more than 100,000 Americans, plus more than 100 focus groups and many in-depth interviews. This new segment (the other two are labeled "Moderns" and "Traditionals") was too small to be considered prominent in the 60's, but now the authors estimate the CC's as 50 million strong. The qualities which define the CC's include: having a very strong belief in ecology; caring about interpersonal relationships; dreaming of world peace; working as social activists. They are active volunteers- in other words, they are walking the walk. In addition, the CC's have a strong belief in spirituality and holistic practices. (In Europe, they could be called "Greens"). To really show, in dramatic detail, the differences between the segments, the authors include charts which clarify their findings.
The reason I have picked this book for JCS, even though the book is classified by the publishers as a "Social Science/Sociology title", is because, about ten years ago, there was a book called, The Clustering of America, which illustrated how the authors believe America was segmented. Business people were able to apply that information to their businesses, and I think this book can work in this same way. 'The Cultural Creatives' are a segment of consumers that is growing, will continue to grow, and needs to be acknowledged by business to truly utilize them in the future.