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Why Your Reputation is Your Most Valuable Intangible Asset

Your reputation is your most valuable intangible asset because it influences your most important tangible results in business, including your bottom line.

According to the Harvard Business Review1, organisations with a strong positive reputation attract better people, are perceived as providing more value so can charge higher prices and have more loyal customers who buy a broader range of products and services.

Research2 also shows that businesses with an enhanced reputation enjoy greater influence on government, have a higher share price and are more likely to be given the benefit of the doubt from stakeholders in times of crisis.

Further to this, a study by the World Economic Forum 20123 found that a quarter of a company’s market value can be directly attributed to its reputation (likely higher now).

It’s not surprising then that a global executive survey3 conducted by Deloitte in 2013 found reputation damage to be the number one risk concern for business executives worldwide.

Deloitte’s 2014 Global Survey on Reputation Risk3 dug deeper into this issue and found that:

  • 87% of executives thought reputation risk as more important or much more important than other strategic risks.
  • Reputation is a board and C-Suite issue.
  • Reputation risk is driven by a wide range of other business risks that must all be actively managed. The top three other risks were ethics and integrity (eg fraud, corruption), security breaches and product/service related risks
  • Customers are the most important stakeholders for managing reputation risk, that is, managing customer expectations and perceptions is critical to success. Employees of all levels are also important stakeholders.
  • Reputation problems have the biggest impact on revenue and brand value. Respondents who had previously experienced a negative reputation event say the biggest impact areas were revenue (41%), loss of brand value (41%), followed by regulatory investigations (37%).

While it may be convenient to think that reputation management is the purview of large organisations such as multinational companies or government departments, in an age where a few clicks of the keyboard can either boost or blast a reputation, individuals and entities of all sizes are not immune.

Beyond factoring in reputational risk into business strategy and taking measures to improve crisis management capability, individuals and entities can also work to build a brand that helps shape a great reputation.

In my latest book ‘Enhance Your Reputation – how to build a brand people want to work for, buy from and invest in’, I provide a practical approach to aligning four critical business dimensions which, together, can help achieve this outcome.

This approach aligns an organisation’s culture (what it thinks), communications (what it says), customer experience (what it does) and citizenship (what it gives). When company beliefs, values and a strong sense purpose are aligned across PR and marketing activities, customer touchpoints and corporate social responsibility initiatives, the consistency of thoughts, words and actions builds brand credibility, fosters trust and enhances reputation.

This alignment also creates more cohesive teams where the thinking, language and behaviours of employees are based on a shared understanding of vision and values, and desired strategic outcomes.

If you’d like to explore how you could enhance your reputation, I welcome your contact via email [email protected] or phone 1800 677 600.



2Langham, Tony. Reputation Management, Emerald Publishing Ltd. UK 2019


©Ros Weadman 2022

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