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Reputation Management for Rogue Employees

Many times hoteliers think of reputation management in the context of monitoring and managing customer feedback. But it’s also important to protect yourself against an employee going rogue and doing something inappropriate that damages the reputation of your brand.

CNN and others reported on how this happened this weekend to Papa John’s Pizza:

Papa John’s Pizza fired a cashier at one of its New York restaurants and apologized to an Asian-American customer for a receipt that identified her as “lady chinky eyes.”

Minhee Cho….posted a photo of the receipt on her Twitter account Saturday morning and by the afternoon it was picked up by a local newspaper. Along with the receipt, Cho tweeted “just FYI my name isn’t ‘lady chinky eyes.'”

The receipt had been viewed online almost 200,000 times by Sunday afternoon, according to the counter on the Twitpic page.

You may not have complete control over what every single employee in your organization does all the time, but understand that the impact of any one of these staff-customer interactions can be so much bigger now. Make sure that you would be able to quickly catch if something like this were to happen….and take the appropriate action.

The faster you respond to a PR disaster – especially in this era of real-time social technologies – the more you can minimize the damage.