Reputation in Words

May 03, 2009

Reputation in Words

   Sometimes I wander through Letters to Shareholders from chairmen or CEOs. This might have become a habit when I first began following CEOs and brushing up on companies and their reputations. When I am asked about a company or its competitors, I like to download the CEO Letters and get a glimpse of what is on their leaders’ or founders’ minds. Sometimes a lot of personality and perceptiveness shows through, other times not. So I happened to be looking at the letter from Baron Benjamin de Rothschild of the LCF Rothschild Group and these words caught my eye in its closing:

“I take pride in picturing that, in the next generation, our Group will inevitably be presided over by women, for I have four daughters. Like my mother and like my wife, whose intelligence and support are invaluable to me, my daughters will know better than we do how to safeguard substance. Because women beget life, they find it too precious a thing to gamble with. If I may be allowed to paraphrase Alfred de Musset, they do not toy with love or money.”

As a woman and mother of daughters, I found them full of humanity and sentiment, especially in light of the economic downfall surrounding so many banking institutions. I am confident that the reputation of the Rothschild’s banking empire will be in good hands in the generation to come.

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Leslie Gaines-Ross
Leslie Gaines-Ross

As Weber Shandwick’s Chief Reputation Strategist, I focus on the ever changing world of reputation. For the past 25 years, I have relentlessly observed, researched and commented on the rise and fall of corporate and CEO reputations.

  • Bo Seeger
    Posted at 15:19h, 12 May Reply

    Thank you for sharing this great article (and accommodating quote).I would be interested in reading more of these letters from the top as it were, as it puts a human touch on “the man behind the curtain”.Do you have any recommendations of a catalog of these or do you search on a company by company basis?

  • Dr. Leslie Gaines-Ross
    Posted at 16:17h, 17 May Reply

    I do not know of an inventory or catalog of these letters and I usually read the letters of CEOs that I am curious about. I just wrote a post about GE’s CEO Letter which is good too. Thanks for the comment. Best, lgr

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