When asked, most corporate CEOs, board members and other 'C-suite' executives almost always say their most important "asset" is their company's brands and reputation. Why then -- historically, anyway -- have companies done so little to actively manage and protect their reputations?
There are a number of excellent explanations -- most notably, that reputations are, of course, intangible, with no easy tools to bring to the fight. Until recently, no insurance product has existed to help and there are no financial products that would allow companies to "hedge" their reputation risk. Some of the companies most adamant about protecting their reputations have done so primarily through their legal departments, often acting only after someone -- or some company -- has already negatively impacted them through actions.
Reputation risk management remains as crucial as ever, as evidenced from the financial crisis of 2008, where many in the banking industry who were considered “too big to fail” have walked away with black eyes and a far greater regulatory oversight as their reward. Warner Risk Group believes that, even without insurance, hedging and other traditional tools, companies can and should actively manage their reputations, aggressively protecting their brands and shaping their own corporate reputation.