Axios News reported a clear generational divide when it comes to how American voters perceive the war in Israel, according to a slew of new polling data. This could explain the university leaders have faced in reacting to the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks.
It could also explain why CEOs have not come under the same level of scrutiny, given that most 18- to 24-year-olds have not yet entered corporate America.
The bottom line: Understanding where your audience lands on controversial issues is critical for effective communication, says Cheryl Fenelle Dixon, principal of Perfectly Clear Communications.
"Academic institutions have historically been places for debate, intellectual curiosity, idea sharing and finding common ground amidst free speech, which is why communication around the Israel-Hamas war is incredibly complicated for universities," says Dixon.
"Add impassioned students and long-standing political conflict to the fray, and it's easy to understand why emotions are running high and a divide is growing deeper."