Around about this time last year I was involved in creating a training course for customer facing staff on Having difficult conversations. In particular, I led on the section of the course around reputation and credibility. I am now in the process of updating my CPD for the year and going through my notes. Part of my research was Rob Brown’s book How to Build your Reputation.
The main takeaway from Brown’s book was that reputation isn’t really one thing, it is a multifaceted concept. Some of it comes from what you do and some comes from reflected reputation from institutions (e.g. where you got your degree or where you have worked). This also plays into the bias of authority as referenced by Robert Cialdini in Influence: the psychology of persuasion. This led to my development of a reputation model using the metaphor of a jigsaw, with each piece of the puzzle being a different aspect of your reputation.
Going over these notes coincidentally led me to pick up a Weber Shandwick report on the importance of CEO reputations. Key takeaways include the scale of the impact CEO reputation has on organisation reputation (as much as 45%), the importance of resonant leadership traits (e.g. honesty, ethics, clear vision, and good communicator) in driving positive reputation, and the need for greater public engagement by the CEO to enhance the reputation of an organisation.