Is it possible to manage corporate character?

In a time when corporate corruption seems almost commonplace and trust in business is depressingly low, is it realistic to saddle Chief Communications Officers (CCOs) with the Herculean task of curating corporate character? The LIBOR mess at Barclays (and, soon, other banks) begs the question. Continue reading

Successful reputation teams

I’m a respectable golfer and can talk all day about the game, yet I can’t play like a PGA pro for more than a few holes. Great golf swings may look simple, but they involve a complex series of biomechanical movements. Throw in competitive pressure, variable terrain and fickle weather, and golf mastery remains a distant dream for me and most players.

In a sense, the process of playing great golf is similar to the process of effectively managing corporate reputation – far easier to discuss than execute, as I argued in a recent post. But success is possible, especially if companies make the right decisions upfront about the reputation team and its approach. Here are a few thoughts on effective teams:

Continue reading

Corporate brands and authenticity

More than a century before Al Gore invented the Internet, Abraham Lincoln observed: “Character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.” Now, that analogy doesn’t make Honest Abe a forefather of corporate reputation management. But it still rings true today, and here’s why. Continue reading

Missing the point

The quality of commentary on reputation management today is disappointing. There’s plenty of it, and the sheer volume creates buzz. But sadly, too much of this commentary misses the point.

Much of what is written, tweeted and said about reputation management is superficial, knee-jerk stuff from pundits who are primarily interested in gaining followers and boosting their profile as a talking head. Continue reading