Communicating Beyond Profits is Key to Corporate Reputation

Communicating Beyond Profits is Key to Corporate Reputation

Treating Employees Well Shapes Your Company’s Image

A survey among 1,004 American adults, conducted by Reputation Leaders in May 2024 found treating employees well (34%) is as important to a company’s reputation as the quality of its products (34%).

Many companies are damaging their corporate reputation by failing to prioritize the interests of their employees when they communicate externally, as well as internally. Instead, they unduly focus on profit and miss opportunities to connect company purpose with the everyday work experiences of their staff.

Employees are particularly frustrated with “corporate speak” that emphasizes profits over people. They seek greater transparency from their employers and feel demotivated by companies promising different things to different people. Inconsistent communication not only affects employee morale but also damages the overall reputation of the company.

Chart showing how people respond to communication from their employer

Influencing Reputation

Treating employees well is not only important to a company’s reputation with workers, but through word of mouth, has a wider influence on a company’s public image.

What a company’s employees say, along with comments from friends and family, influence two-thirds (67%) of US consumers, nearly twice as many people as news media (35%).

The influence of news stories differs significantly among different groups. More Democrats (45%), for instance, rely on news stories when gauging a company’s reputation compared to Republicans (28%).

Social media notably ranks lower as an influential source when gauging corporate reputation at only 14%. However, social media is almost as important as news stories for people under 40 (22% vs. 27%). Among this younger group, young women (62%) value the opinions of friends and family far more than young men (38%).

The message is clear: listening to and valuing employee voices boosts morale and strengthens a company’s standing both with consumers and with their own workers.


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Rep Pulse 6, May 2024, Access Form

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