Companies spend years cultivating and protecting their business reputation among their clients, within their industry, and in the greater community. However, a single misstep by an employee can cause irreparable harm, leading to the loss of trust, customers, and revenue. In today's Aegis blog post, we look at several ways employees could harm your company's reputation, and how thorough, ongoing training can help prevent these costly mistakes.
Distasteful or Inappropriate Social Media Activity
According to national statistics, over 80% of all Americans used a social media account in 2017. Although most people have social media accounts for personal use, any comments or posts that are inflammatory, vulgar, or hateful can reflect poorly on the person and their friends and employers. Because social media activity can stay online forever, a comment or post from years ago can be uncovered now that puts the person and employer in a precarious position. Companies can't prevent employees from using social media, but they can train them on how to use it in a respectful way that doesn't jeopardize the company or other employees. This would include not sharing or posting anything inflammatory or hateful, and reviewing past activity to remove anything that might fall under those categories. This can help protect the company and also reduce the likelihood of a retaliatory threat or attack that could hurt employees on the job.
Copyright or Trademark Infringement
Another way an employee can hurt a company's reputation is by infringing on another company's copyright or trademark. This might be using a photo, logo, color scheme, font, music sample, patented product, or process without proper acknowledgment and permission. Employees should always do their due diligence when creating materials or products that will be used by their own company to ensure they are not violating copyright or trademark laws. This can help prevent costly litigation and the loss of customers and revenue.
Poor Customer Service or Communication Skills
Sometimes a company's reputation can be harmed by a simple client interaction or lack of customer service. For example, if a restaurant's hostess discriminates against a particular group of diners, the offended party could go public with their encounter and the restaurant could face public backlash, boycotts, or even a lawsuit. Likewise, if a person tries to call a business with a question and never reaches a customer service rep or gets no real help, the person could go viral with their experience on social media, leading to a loss of customers and a poor reputation. Employees should get thorough training on how to offer superb customer service and ensure they do not discriminate against any group of individuals.
Finally, a business may suffer a loss of their established and positive reputation because of rude or unsafe commercial drivers. If your floral business creates stunning arrangements and beautiful floral designs but the delivery driver is unsafe or unprofessional behind the wheel, it could hurt the company's bottom line. Also, if your commercial driver constantly parks the company truck in fire zones or handicap spaces to save time, this could also hurt the company's reputation among the general public, in addition to garnering fines and tickets.
Business owners work hard to develop a solid company reputation, but a single employee can harm it in an instant if proper training is not done early and often. Companies can also get extra protection through quality Commercial Insurance from Aegis Insurance & Financial Services. Aegis offers a full range of reliable and comprehensive Commercial Insurance policies, including General Liability, Commercial Umbrella Insurance, Business Owners Policy, and Commercial Property Insurance. Call Aegis today at 713-850-7622 for more information or fill out our online form for a free quote!