May 17, 2004
News & Opinion: BOOK REVIEW: 18 Immutable Laws of Corporate Reputation
Author: Ronald Alsop
Reviewer: johnmoore (from the Brand Autopsy blog)
In 18 Immutable Laws of Corporate Reputation, Ronald Alsop gives sound advice on how to manage, measure, and nurture the reputation of a corporation.
As a marketer, the concept of displacing the discipline of brand management for reputation management is profound. Lets face it, branding is a nebulous term that not everyone in your company fully understands, including folks in the marketing department. However, everyone understands the term reputation and all the emotional and rational feelings associated with a solid reputation and with a tarnished reputation.
Alsop sums up the importance of a strong brand er strong corporate reputation by writing, "A good reputation attracts customers, investors, and talented employees, leading to higher profits and stock prices. And over time, companies that nurture their reputations enjoy a halo effect that makes people trust them and give them the benefit of the doubt during rocky periods."
Later on, Alsop addresses how companies, when facing reputation challenges, should manage crises quickly and sincerely. In chapter 14, he writes, Successful crisis resolution calls for humility and patience. You will only deepen a crisis if you arrogantly believe you can control everything by simply calling an end to the controversy by ignoring it. You must confront a crisis and deal with it openly and courageously. If you dig yourself in a hole by being high-handed, defensive, or, worst of all, deceptive, the damage to your reputation will take far longer to repair.
Dont expect to read the book for answers. Instead, use the book to give you enlightened perspectives on how other companies have approached solving reputation challenges. 18 Immutable Laws of Corporate Reputation is exhaustively researched and littered with case studies from well known companies such as Johnson & Johnson and British Petroleum to lesser known, more regional companies like Wawa convenience stores. Alsops writing style is engaging, straight-forward, and highly informative resulting in a worthy read for anyone working for a Fortune 500 company or for an up-and-coming Fortune 500 company.
johnmoore quick bio: When not blogging, reading a business book, or drinking a fine Belgian ale I find time to be the director of national marketing for Whole Foods Market. In my prior life, I spent 8 years working for Starbucks Coffee in a variety of marketing roles.
About Dylan Schleicher
Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.