The “Corporate Communication and Reputation Summit” which was held at Boğaziçi University on Friday, December 9th, aimed to provide insight and perspective on corporate reputation management to participants from all sectors, especially to corporate communication and human resources professionals.
The opening remarks of the summit, which was held by the Public Affairs Institute in cooperation with Boğaziçi University, were delivered by Dean of Boğaziçi University Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences Prof. Aysegul Toker, Boğaziçi University Faculty Member and Head of Center for Research in Corporate Governance Prof. Vedat Akgiray and Head of Public Affairs Institute Atilla Demir Yerlikaya.
Tom Oliver: “You must constantly question your position for corporate reputation”
One of the keynote speakers of the summit, Consultant, Entrepreneurship Coach, and Author Tom Oliver, stated that the managements of large companies, who have maintained their leadership position for a long time in the past, often ask him the question that “Why do the most successful people no longer want to work with us?”. And answered the question by arguing that, “Money is no longer the most important motivation for everyone, the best now care about the reputation of where they work. Because people now want to acquire the ability to improve themselves. To ensure corporate reputation, you need to constantly question your purpose and position as a company.”
Pointing out the importance of companies’ ability to keep up with the changing environment in this new era of rapid changes, Oliver gave examples of the failures of companies that were a world-leading brand in the past but did not change their position and purpose.
Highlighting that the factor that differentiates companies from each other in the new world is no longer money, Oliver said, “When I call any employee from your company at 3:00 AM and ask about your mission, they should be able to answer me clearly and briefly. If you want to improve your business, you need to think about values, not profit.”
Aysegul Toker: “The components of corporate reputation are making promises and keeping promises”
In her opening speech, the dean of Boğaziçi University Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences Prof. Aysegul Toker expressed her pleasure to host the Summit at Boğaziçi University for the second time, and divided the components of corporate reputation into making a promise and fulfilling the promise. Stating that they carried out unique activities to protect and maintain the century-old reputation of the University, Toker cited the Digital Analytics Summit held on December 1 as an example.
Vedat Akgiray: “There can be no sustainable economic development without good corporate governance”
Boğaziçi University Faculty Member and Head of Center for Research in Corporate Governance Prof. Vedat Akgiray pointed out that today’s financial institutions tend to grow with short-term solutions and stated that such tendencies lead to corporate scandals and financial crises.
“Firms and individuals must realize that reputation investment is the most profitable investment in the long run,” Akgiray said and added that “misbehaviors” that cause crises will be eliminated when priority is given to producing long-term solutions. Emphasizing that good corporate governance is indispensable for regulatory institutions, Akgiray stressed that an environment of trust cannot be created for the investor if there is no good governance.
Bekir Agirdir: “You must be sincere, fair and visionary for reputation”
In his speech which he evaluated the reputation issue on the basis of Turkey, Konda Research and Consultancy General Manager Bekir Agirdir said, “Reputation is basically opinions. It is a complex structure in which identities, emotions, and ideologies are decisive”, “You must be sincere, fair, and visionary”, Agirdir advised the participants, based on the data of the Konda Reputation Research report.
According to the results of the research presented by Agirdir, reputation is clearly associated with the concept of reliability, and there is no widespread acceptance or memorization in Turkey about who or which institution is reputable. Different cultural codes evaluate both reputation and disrepute differently. Within the framework of these results, Agirdir emphasized that the business world should add local voice to universal values and emphasized the necessity of being a party to important issues such as human rights, environment, and women’s issues for corporate reputation.