What’s your company’s public face?

I heard a comment by Sarah Wurrey at Custom Scoop (who btw writes a good blog) the other day that resonated with me because of a company I have been talking to.

“It’s easy to forget in the days when anyone can broadcast every moment of their life, that the official spokesperson is not the only public face of a company.”

Time was when the “public face” -at least the physical or tangible one– was the corporate tower, the web site, the PR department, the CEO. What companies need is more than a corporate facial, but an injection in reputation management basics.

Who manages your reputation from within? If the focus is on manages, then yes, it’s the internal folks usually assigned to the job, the PR department, and the marketing department. But it’s becoming painfully obvious that employees define/articulate the true reputation of the organization.

We’ve all worked at companies where the press release goes out and the employees literally laugh at the language that describes the product –or the CEO. What do you think they talk about when they go out to lunch or meet their neighbors over the weekend? Certainly not in the boilerplate language that hit PRNewswire.

As for the external brand and media handlers, I tend to be biased, and believe they can be a lot more realistic and objective. They don’t have to put on a happy face every time the boss walks by, so they can give him/her a better reading of the reputation out there.

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