Tag Archives: thought leadership

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Exxon versus BP: Managing Reputation Risk in the Era of ESG

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Nir Kossovsky and Denise Williamee of Steel City Re, an AC Client, publish a piece in Hart Energy about the different reputational risks oil and gas companies face as they chase ESG goals.

Compare BP’s statements and actions to those of Exxon Mobil Corp., whose pledges have been more modest and measured—cutting emissions from its oil and gas production 15%-20%, all under their control, by 2025 and ending routine flaring of methane from its oil-and-gas operations by the end of 2030. The company seems to be taking an approach that focuses on its central mission while promising what it can reasonably hope to accomplish on the environment front. Perhaps they are bearing in mind the old adage that it is better to under promise and over deliver.

Striving for environmental purity may be noble, but it can be materially damaging when companies and their leadership set lofty goals they cannot attain. These reputational issues are playing out in both courts of public opinion and courts of law, where derivative lawsuits naming board members and citing reputational issues are now being upheld. In fact, federal securities lawsuit filings alleging reputation harm are up 60% over last year in the third year of a rising trend.

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CRE Client on Improving the Region’s Building Permit Process

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Donald F. Smith, Jr., President of AC Client Regional Industrial Development Corporation (RIDC), pens year-end column for the Pittsburgh Business Times about how to improve the region’s building permit process.

For commercial real estate and government in 2021, let’s resolve to improve our permitting practices and work toward making our region one of the best to build in. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel to do it. We can learn from those who do it best.

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Will Political Polarization Stop Companies From Supporting Social Causes?

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Insight from the CEO of Steel City Re, an AC Client, was featured in the Wall Street Journal.

When it comes to taking a stance on either race or politics more generally, authenticity and consistency are key. That means going beyond one-off marketing campaigns and social media posts meant to bolster a brand’s image and signaling a deeper organizational commitment to principles-based causes by investing real time and money, brand and reputation analysts say.

Taking a stance on any social issue should start with a thorough evaluation of the company’s stakeholders, according to Nir Kossovsky, chief executive of Steel City Re LLC, a reputation risk management and insurance company.

Companies traditionally have divided responsibility for different stakeholders among different corporate functions—the human-resources department, for instance, manages employees, while marketing handles customers, general counsel or compliance officers deal with regulators, and so on.

Companies need someone who can gather information about different stakeholders and strategically manage the reputational risks associated with each, Mr. Kossovsky said.

“If you know what they want, you have a choice: make operations conform to their expectations or invest resources in managing their expectations to something you can meaningfully reach,” he said.

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Steel City Re Big Pharma Study Featured in Agenda

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Research conducted by AC client Steel City Re is featured in Agenda’s article on big pharma’s reputation (paywall).

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