Crisis! “Can’t happen to us”. But the list is very long. Almost 200 corporate crisis within the last 8 years in the US and E.U!! Siemens, Whole Foods, Novartis, Uber, VW, Chipotle, Fifa, Starbucks, Facebook-Analytica, Halifax, Google.
The Siemens case was estimated at a direct cost of $2,2 billion. The VW emissions’ scandal retracted back some million cars. The food giants in the US pay constantly fines when accused of their product ingredients, or their employee policies. Even a local rotisserie in my hometown is against customers who happened to visit its kitchen… Yes, I know “it can’t happen to us…“.
YouTube has taken the heat off the Facebook-Analytica data crisis, thanks to revelations it is still running adverts on video channels promoting paedophilia, white nationalists and North Korean propaganda. Overnight, same day, an investigation by CNN claimed that advertising for 300 companies including retailers, tech giants, newspapers and government agencies had been running on extremist video channels.
Back in 1998, Bridgestone tires began hearing how some of their tires were suddenly separating, causing horrifying accidents. For two years, the company sat on the information, then, in 2000, the NHTSA announced a massive investigation into the reports. When these headlines hit, a nation of drivers was terrified. The company did nothing until CBS News reported that 200 people had been killed by the tires and 700 more people had been injured. Then, they recalled 6,5 million tyre sets! Do you want more?
Crisis incidents will intensify. Why?
- We go through a major global transformation: societal changes, global mobility, tougher standards
- The product, quality, ingredients, safety, consumer, prices, practices
- Companies scaling global offerings must comply with local legislation (not always the case…)
- Unprepared companies, un-audited operations and risks (factories, data, IT, warehousing etc)
- Political leadership, tougher regulation, rules for global sustainability
- Terrorist attacks, natural disasters, security and cyber-crime
- People and true ethics are back on the agenda
- Diversity, sexual harassment, HR policies, welfare, workplace issues, awful practices
- Media scrutiny, backed by an insight of worthy causes, social justice, inquisitive journalism etc.
Are you completely sure, it “Can’t happen to you?”