More recorded words might mean more reputational threats

Last month, an extraordinary change occurred in the way people in America work. In just a matter of weeks, millions of workers began performing their jobs virtually, and, from what we’ve seen, they haven’t lost a beat. In fact, so many companies have shifted to video conferencing that today Zoom has a greater market cap than American, United, Delta and JetBlue Airlines combined.

Though this transition has been surprisingly seamless, the work-via-web norm is creating a new set of legal and reputational risks that may still impact many organizations and individuals long…


The word “well-being” is really having a moment right now.

Nearly every organization has a reason to communicate with their constituencies about the coronavirus. They need to give customers confidence they will be there for them; they need to tell their employees how operations will change; and they need to assure investors that they have a plan during challenging times, to name a few.

And each message needs to strike the right tone, and be clear, concise, and factual.

Over the past week or two, we have seen a trend emerging around these communications that undermines their ability to be…


History says don’t be overconfident about safety on the seas

Photo by Russ Widger on Unsplash

So, how would you feel about getting on a cruise ship right now?

In normal times, when you ask someone this question, you’re likely to get a passionate response one way or another. Fanatics embrace the full culture of cruises from the food to the activities to the multiple ports-of-call.

Cruise detractors and germaphobes, however, for years have described ships as “floating petri dishes” for their unique ability to provide a venue for easy transmission of an illness. 2020 has made this concern frighteningly real. The threat of COVID19 —…


How a journey for smarter food ended up at the drive thru

Veggie burgers have never been mainstream. With only 3.2% of US adults adhering to a vegetarian-based diet, for most shoppers meat alternatives were purchased for the cousin at the family barbecue — if at all.

But, as consumers are increasingly concerned about their environmental impact, the Impossible Burger has done, well, the impossible. It has transcended diet trends and is taking over the mainstream.

An unlikely evolution.

Vegetarianism may date back to ancient Egypt, but it took off in the US when Diet for a Small Planet —…


Is it time for Lyft to recalculate its route?

Remember the Avis commercials that boasted, “We’re number two, we try harder”? That tagline would become a rallying cry for employees and customers alike to push Hertz out of the top spot.

Fast forward several decades, and several transportation options later, and it’s clear that the second entry into the rideshare marketplace, Lyft, could learn a thing or two from history.

Lyft has been all over the news recently for its perceived failure to keep female riders safe from drivers who have made sexually inappropriate comments and advances. In one incident…


Robbins responds to allegations of sexual misconduct and berating victims of abuse with righteous indignation. Will it work?

On May 17th, Buzzfeed released the first of a three-part series accusing self-help guru, Tony Robbins of sexual misconduct that allegedly took place in the 80’s, 90’s and early 2000’s. The article details a list of allegations that he propositioned, groped, and exposed himself to named and unnamed women.

Hours later, Robbins went on the offensive, attacking Buzzfeed in “ An Open Letter to Buzzfeed Editors and Directors” posted on Medium . In it he said:

“Unfortunately, your organization has made it…


What in the world was Marriott thinking with this one?

By: Michael Rubin, J. Wilson Advisors

In an uncharacteristically bold move, the Marriott Corporation has combined several of its rewards programs, including Marriott Rewards, Ritz Carlton Rewards, and SPG Preferred Guest, into a single program called Bonvoy. The new program will have 120 million combined members.

For points-obsessed travelers, it’s an attractive idea. Use a single rewards credit card and earn free stays and upgrades at dozens of brands and thousands of properties worldwide.

But will it fly?

By choosing a new brand altogether, Marriott is asking people who relate…


Are Elon Musk’s tweets a sign of unchecked impulses or marketing genius?

Elon Musk is a guy who refuses to follow the rules. He builds a car company to do something much more credible organizations could not — manufacture electric vehicles on a large scale that people want and can afford. It has been so successful that they can’t produce enough of them.

He defies traditional economics and common sense by launching one company to commercialize space travel, and another to dig massive transportation tunnels under cities. …


What every company can learn from the fashion house’s response.

By: Michael Rubin, J. Wilson Advisors

When Gucci released a new black sweater with a pull-up neck and cut-out mouth with oversized red lips, it wasn’t just African Americans who shook their heads in disbelief. Nearly everyone did.

People viewed the ridiculous $900 sweater as a sign of either pure racism or such severe cultural insensitivity that it might just as well be.

Spike Lee announced that he was boycotting Gucci (and Prada), saying they “Don’t Have A Clue When It Comes To Racist, Blackface Hateful Imagery. WAKE UP.”

The…

J. Wilson Advisors

What do you want to be known for? jwilsonadvisors.com

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