If You’re on This List, You’re Overdue for Crisis Management

Jonathan Bernstein crisis communications, crisis management, Crisis Prevention, crisis public relations, Crisis Response, customer service, Erik Bernstein, internal crisis management, internet crisis management, internet reputation management, Jonathan Bernstein, online crisis management, online reputation management, PR, public relations, reputation management 1 Comment

Talk about bad press…

Landing on anyone’s “most hated” list is a sign that you may be in trouble, but finding yourself among 24/7 Wall St.’s “10 Most Hated Companies in America” means you’re in desperate need of crisis management.

How were the companies chosen? Let’s look at the criteria:

To identify the most hated companies in America, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed a variety of metrics for customer satisfaction, stock performance, and employee satisfaction. This included total return to shareholders compared to the broader market and other companies in the same sector in the past 52 weeks. We considered customer data from a number of sources, including the Consumer Reports Naughty & Nice list, the ForeSee Experience Index, and the American Customer Satisfaction Index. We also included employee satisfaction based on worker opinion scores recorded by Glassdoor. Finally, we considered management decisions made in the past year that hurt a company’s image and brand value, as measured by marketing research firms BrandZ and Interbrand.

In other words, this was no, “you got my order wrong so I’m putting you on the Internets!” type of list. If you would up here, you really messed up, and probably in more ways than one. Now, without further ado, here are the “10 Most Hated Companies in America”:

  1. McDonalds
  2. Abercrombie & Fitch
  3. Electronic Arts
  4. Sears Holdings
  5. DISH Network
  6. Walmart
  7. JPMorgan Chase
  8. lululemon
  9. BlackBerry
  10. JCPenney

Some of these orgs are regular residents of lists like this – we’re looking at you McDonalds and Walmart – while others, like Electronic Arts with its SimCity launch disaster and lululemon with its infamous incidents involving outspoken (ex-)Chairman Chip Wilson, are more recent comers, but what they all have in common is a dire need for some type of crisis management.

But what about the ones still making money?

It’s interesting to note that several of the companies on this list are actually still turning nice profits, even while clearly facing serious issues in departments like customer service and employee satisfaction. While that can be taken as a sign all is not lost, if company leadership allows the fact that money is rolling in to blind them to the need to fix outstanding issues, they’re going to be seeing a lot of red on those financial reports before too long. And if they remain profitable, they are probably not AS profitable as they would be with effective reputation management.

Showing up on one of these lists once, or even a couple of times, doesn’t necessarily mean your organization is done for. What it DOES mean, if that you have a heck of a lot of problems to fix, and the time to get to work on them is now.

The BCM Blogging Team

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