Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Bain Comments Corporate Reputation Ranking

Mark Bain, President of Upper 90 Consulting, has compared the Harris Interactive’s Reputation Quotient (RQ) rankings with the Reputation Institute’s U.S. RepTrak results.
Although the two studies take different approaches, both generally agree on the worst and best corporate reputations in the US.
Mark has made a nice summary of interesting thoughts: "Rankings matter to the most reputable companies, which care about how they compare with all firms, not just their direct competitors. These companies work to improve their reputation rankings every year. Their CEOs view corporate reputation as an asset to be leveraged for strategic opportunity, not just a risk to be managed for minimal business harm. It’s no wonder these firms enjoy strong competitive advantage and consistent, sustained financial success.
Companies with the lowest reputation rankings seem to emphasize financial performance over all else, including reputation. Though most have strong financial results (none more than ExxonMobil), reputation is more of a risk than opportunity for this group. In a written response published in the Wall Street Journal, Halliburton’s spokesperson basically said her firm doesn’t care about public opinion represented in these rankings because her company doesn’t sell to consumers. But one has to wonder: would her management still feel that way when top-notch talent chooses to work with Halliburton’s more reputable competitors? Or when some government refuses to give Halliburton the benefit of the doubt in their next self-inflicted crisis, resulting in excessive regulations and/or fines?
There are B2B and B2C companies in both rankings and virtually all are highly visible. These firms work hard to build awareness, familiarity and understanding. They use the full arsenal of communications tools to tell their story proactively, and they reap the benefits of their visibility. Meanwhile, low-visibility companies can only congratulate themselves for saving money on such frivolities while their reputation languishes.
Not every company is large enough or familiar enough to be included in these rankings. But any company can use the exact same models, tools and techniques the reputation leaders use – and those that do will benefit the most."

Have a look at the rankings (source: Wall Street Journal)
read more about the subject here

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