Reputation Laundering

November 06, 2011

Reputation Laundering

  It has been a very hectic week as we travel around to the many markets in EMEA to discuss Socializing Your Brand, our new research on what it takes to be truly social today. As always, I try to keep up with other news and events and that has been harder than usual as my laptop crashed between markets.
Caught an article citing Michael Silverleaf, legal counsel hired by News Corp., saying that it would be harmful to air information related to “a culture of illegal information access” because it would be “extremely damaging to NGN’s public reputation.”  (NGN=News Group Newspapers) I had a double take when I read the last two words of this sentence. Is there such a thing anymore as a public vs. private reputation? It seems to me that there is no longer a divide between private and public. There are no secrets and we are all public figures and public institutions. Let`s get real.

The other article that caught my eye came about while taking a train with my colleague to a mountain top village near Geneva.  Instead of day dreaming as I had hoped, this brought me back to reality. The article is terribly interesting because it is about women CEOs and how their husbands support them in their quest to the top.  James Stewart wrote it probably because he was thinking about the new female CEO of IBM who recently joined the exclusive – and small — club of women CEOs.

“Asked at a Barnard College conference what men could do to help advance women’s leadership, Rosabeth Moss Kanter, a professor at Harvard Business School and author of the landmark “Men and Women of the Corporation,” answered, “The laundry.””

Hah. If only it were that simple. Made me realize that I had to get back to the hotel and get some laundry done quickly for the next leg of the tour.

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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.

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