What’s The Reputation Economy?

We’re living in the Reputation Economy right now.  More than any time in human history, we are checking multiple sources to ensure the product we are buying, the company that we want to work for, and the people who we hire not only fit the criteria for which we are looking, but more importantly we search to see what their reputational halo is like.

Every day there are millions of business transactions and hiring decisions made based upon reputations.  These halos reflect our reputation and drive interest or disinterest in association with people and brands.

The reality is that reputations are earned over years of consistent actions and behaviors, but in today’s world of instantaneous information gathering and citizen journalists tweeting and posting, reputations can be galvanized or shattered in moments.

Still wondering about that? Do you think Lance Armstrong experienced this when he admitted to doping and lost his sponsors, was stripped of his Tour de France titles, and forever tarnished his legacy?

scandal Lance Armstrong doping

Plain and simple, there is tremendous value in association and that is what is driving the Reputation Economy. And, make no mistake, reputations are competitive differentiators!

I believe Warren Buffett nailed it,

Guess what? You are the firm. You should be ruthless with how you manage your reputation because of the power it has to transform your life and business.

Think about that last piece of business that came your way via referral.  How about the phone call you received asking if you would be interested in discussing a new opportunity?  Maybe you look around your agency or company and see great talent that has been with you for years?  Or better yet, perhaps your HR department can’t keep up with the inbound resumes from people who want to work with your firm?  All of these situations are tied to reputation.

At a time when our actions are more transparent and shareable than every before, it’s time for a shift in how we proactively build, manage, and harness the power of one of our greatest assets. It’s time for a Reputation Shift.