Monday, July 31, 2006

Promises, Lies and Apologies 

My thanks to Peter Shinbach for making me aware of this experiment at Wharton. It has an important outcome of PR practitioners. It's not that we didn't know the effects of lying, but it does quantify what PR has been saying for many decades about trust and credibility.

Actions and words do matter, the researchers say. That's a rediscovery of the wheel, but it is an objective reminder of what we tell internal and external clients. That is, if they don't believe us, point to the research. If they don't believe the research, PR practitioners should be smart enough to get away from the individuals and find someplace else to work.

On the other hand, lying is so much a condition of life that it is little wonder most consumers don't trust companies much. I recall a family story of an uncle who was a lobbyist for many years in a major state. The word was that everyone trusted him on both sides of the aisle because he was one of the few persons inside or outside the legislature who refused to lie. That's a commentary on human nature.

Trust has economic impact. That's a message CEOs should hear repeatedly.


Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?