In late January, RP EVP and Chicago GM Andrew Moyer joined the team at FUND, a platform that facilitates entrepreneurial and investment activity, to record an episode of their podcast, The Ecosystem. On the episode, Andrew discussed the importance of a company, or brand’s, reputation and the need to have a clearly articulated narrative.
A company’s reputation is its most valuable asset and forms the core currency between the brand and its stakeholders. In addition to providing the initial element needed to build a lasting relationship with stakeholders, a positive reputation creates trust that can allow a company time and goodwill to respond to an issue or crisis (as long as the response meets stakeholder expectations). This strong relationship enables a company to more effectively protect, enhance and rebuild its reputation should a company face an issue or crisis.
Establishing a Reputation
To establish their reputation, a company must be able to articulate a clear, concise and consistent narrative, or the company’s story. Through a narrative, stakeholders can better understand what a company offers them and the company’s values and commitments – past, present and future. This story should include the company’s heritage (where did it come from, the “origin story”), it should explain who the company is today (and why does it matter now), and establish the company’s path forward (where are we going and why, what are the opportunities we see).
Having an effective narrative serves as the foundation for enhancing relationship and establishing a positive reputation that can pay dividends in the future. A company should treat its reputation like putting money in the bank. Early strategic investments pay off in the future and provide protection in tough times.