Some thoughts on reputation and responsibility

Introduction

The @CIMexchange Professional marketer series: Reputation and responsibility held at the London School of Fashion, provided me with lots of food for thought.  Reputation and responsibility is something that has been a theme of a lot of my work throughout my career including volunteering that I have undertaken. It is particularly relevant to behaviour change campaigning.

About the event

Reputation is built on trust so in the first session @Nick Barron, Managing DirectorIMG_4039 of Edelman’s Corporate Reputation team, looked at the role of trust from a business perspective and society at large by revealing key findings from the 2016 Edelman Trust Barometer – Global report. He explained how integrity, engagement, products and services, purpose and operations all contribute to building trust and their effect on buying behaviour for consumers and businesses alike.

The slide image highlights how organisations can generate greater trust, e.g. customer recommendations and positive social media feedback. Something that was striking, but not surprising, was the trust difference between the ‘haves and have nots ‘, i.e. those facing income equality were likely to trust organisations or feel optimistic about the future. Interestingly, trust amongst UK employees was particularly low – a real challenge for internal communicators and organisations in this country in order to promote advocacy. An organisations, ability to listen and demonstrate integrity, as well communicating a defined purpose were all positive in relation to building trust.

The second session looked at responsibility from a personal perspective. @Steve Revill highlighted the benefits of volunteering and its part in contributing to personal development and growth (both for the individual and the organisation). Using The Prince’s Trust as a case study, Steve shared a number of practical, implementable insights to anyone interested in personal or organisational development.

Volunteering

Personally, I’ve always been drawn to volunteering opportunities and in the pastfoodbank Katy have worked with mental health, homelessness and befriending organisations. Having promoted volunteering to employees in an internal communications capacity I’m also aware of some of the barriers. The “win, win, win” benefits that Steve highlighted are useful to remember when considering or promoting volunteering:

  • for the individual – lifelong learning and a sense of personal responsibility.
  • the organisation you work for – better motivated and well rounded staff.
  • society – improving the world for future generations.

Further resources

YouScreen Shot 2016-05-18 at 12.13.51 can review commentary on the event at #cimreputation and read more at CIM Exchange.

The issue of reputation is considered further in @PaulHitchens CIM post on “Managing your brand and reputation risks”.

It’s also worth considering how age/generational issues are affect peoples perception of reputation and responsibility. This is considered from an internal communications perspective in the Atta gamification company blog: How to create an engaging workplace environment for Millennials.

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