business reputation

In a Crisis, Think Like Your Customer

Someone files a lawsuit alleging your taco is filled with something less than meat. Sound familiar? This isn't a time to hit the bunker. It is time to think like your customers.

Whatever you think of Taco Bell's response to the lawsuit, one thing is clear – companies need to respond from the point of view of their customers. Taco Bell turned to its huge Facebook fan base to generate support. It also posted sponsored links to drive Web searchers to where it could tell its side of the story.

However, it missed an opportunity to reach a wider, more skeptical audience by, for example, showing its supply chain for meat – from the ranch to the Taco Bell counter. You don't need a dry business school presentation. Humor and a little presentational value could have been employed to make the trip from hoof to taco fun to watch, as well as instructive.

Bored? Try a Board Experience

Volunteering for a nonprofit board may be a rewarding experience, but ask some key questions before joining.Many professionals find they are a desired commodity as potential members of nonprofit boards of directors. This type of community engagement looks great on a resume and is good for your business reputation.

Saying “yes” to a recruiter may result in a rewarding experience. Then again, serving as a volunteer director can be more painful than a root canal. Clearly, there are veterans who are critical of the nonprofit experience.

“Most are just deplorable – wasting precious staff energies and bringing nothing to the board table,” writes author and blogger Bill Freeman. “We need a 'Jack Kevorkian' for nonprofit boards – cutting the oxygen and giving a merciful death since beheading is so old world.”

CFM staff members have volunteered and led important community organizations. We believe serving as a board member is worthwhile, but there is a list of questions you should be prepared to ask: