I recently read where Warren Buffett said that reputation takes 20 years to build and five minutes to ruin. Over the last few weeks we have reviewed the lives of some very prominent politicians and businessmen whose lives were ruined. As an executive, you most likely consider your reputation to be your most important asset, more so than your technical competence. And why not? As a manufacturer you have a reputation to uphold to your clients, your owners and to the public who pass judgment on you every day.  

Any operation or senior manager within your company can impact your company’s overall reputation both positively and negatively by their individual actions or corporate activities. As a company, you take regular risks in the marketplace. Those risks must be monitored often to ensure you have not crossed the threshold of an activity that can destroy or negatively impact the company’s reputation. When an individual’s actions put the company in the negative media spotlight, as managers, you must take action immediately to distance their actions from your corporate reputation. That’s easily done. But what do you do when your company’s actions come under fire from the media?  

Stay tuned. Next time we will conclude our thoughts.