Sometimes it feels like running a successful business is an intricate orchestra of cogs and wheels, belts and springs—kind of like the inner workings of a watch. And those parts have to be perfectly aligned and moving in the right ways in order for your business to run well and succeed. But just like the intricate machinery of a watch, if your business takes too big of a jolt it could throw everything off.
That’s why it’s important to pay attention to all the little things that, if not taken care of, could throw your business off track. For example, not having an effective reputation management strategy in place can adversely affect your corporate communication. As a business, your corporate communication should reflect dependability, credibility, stability, and overall coherence. Without these qualities, your shareholders, investors, customers, and employees can get nervous about your business and may be less likely to invest their time and money in your company.
The Effects of Bad Reputation Management
Effective reputation management can project a fantastic image for your company, but without a reputation management strategy in place, small cracks in your watch crystal can seem out of proportion and cause nervousness and loss of confidence from all parties. And this loss of confidence can affect your entire business:
Shareholders: When your top executives and investment companies see that your online rankings are filled with so-called “scam reports” and negative information—even if they are complete fabrications—the people who have a large stake in your company’s success can begin to lose faith in its leadership. And that’s when people start making rash decisions and second guessing each other to the detriment of the company.
Investors: The same goes for individual investors. If they begin to see negative online search results for your company, they’ll begin to sell shares and stop investing, causing your overall business value to decrease.
Customers: Negative search results will turn away potential customers and make current customers rethink their loyalty to your brand.
Employees: When employees see that the company they work for has a bad online reputation, they begin to lose confidence in the company, care less about their job performance, and may begin to look for work elsewhere. No one wants to work for a company with a bad reputation.
The Positive Effects of Successful Reputation Management
However, building a positive and strong reputation management strategy can reverse the negative affects of bad search results, pushing negative information down and pulling positive information up.
Shareholders: Positive online search results give shareholders confidence and a positive outlook for your business, and major investment groups will be more hands-off with their approach to your company.
Investors: With no negative search results apparent, investors feel secure in continuing their investment in your company and will trust you to increase their profits.
Customers: Negative search results can drive customers away, but a positive search results page for your company can build confidence in your company and bring in more customers and referrals.
Employees: It’s been proven time and time again that employees who feel their company is run well and is improving the lives of the people it deals with are happier in their jobs and less likely to leave—even for a higher paying position. This decreases turnover and boosts employee morale, creating a happier, more motivated workforce.
Broken Windows Theory
There’s a theory in law enforcement called the “Broken Windows Theory.” It states that the more broken windows you see in a neighborhood, the more crime will happen there. However, if you fix the broken windows, crime will decrease, because criminals will see it’s a neighborhood where people take care of their houses and property, so criminals will be less likely to target it. This theory was one of the main factors in cleaning up New York City in the late 80s and early 90s, making New York one of the safest cities in the US.
In a way, reputation management is like taking care of the broken windows in your search results. If you can clean up the neighborhood of your search results, you‘ll build confidence in everyone who is involved in your business and at every level. Overall, Reputation management will strengthen your corporate communications and make your business thrive.