“It takes many good deeds to build a reputation, and only one bad one to lose it”
– Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)
1. What are the secrets to a good corporate reputation?
Your corporate reputation is the result of what you do, how you do it, and how you communicate. Companies earn their reputation by providing products or services that consumers value, by treating their employees and others well, and rewarding their investors.
2. Why do so many companies seem to come unstuck?
Many companies have an unbalanced reputation as a result of focusing on one group of stakeholders to the detriment of others. This is a recipe for resentment and conflict. Banks, telcos and utilities have a difficult job because they provide essential services and a great number of people have direct experience of dealing with them, often in stressful situations. Companies that have dominant market positions can also appear exploitative.
3. What advice do you give to companies looking to enhance their reputation?
Identify how you are viewed by your stakeholders, understand your strengths and weaknesses, and develop a plan of action to close the gap between where you are and where you would like to be. Recognise that reputations have to be earned and ensure that all aspects of the organisation are aligned.