April 4, 2011
When Martha Reeves & The Vandellas belted “Nowhere to run to, baby, nowhere to hide” they clearly weren’t singing about the Internet, yet the advent of the web decades later legitimized the claim. The internet leaves us exposed.
Nowadays, we’re asked to divulge considerably more about our personal—and professional - brand than in 1964, when that song topped the charts. And people talk; oh, they talk. One misstep and the Twitter ammo begins flying. Do something tremendous and the masses may gush.
It may seem, then, that playing hermit is prudent. Not so.
The topic of transparency came up during lunch with a new client today and I offered that, no matter how strong the urge to spin, ya just don’t wanna scratch that itch. If you’re experiencing slumped sales—or someone choked on a bone at your restaurant (they’re fine)—and a local reporter wants the full story, respond accurately and then offer a positive newsworthy angle about your business. Make it easy and the reporter may go easier on you—even praise you for playing nice, assuming you’re not the artist formerly known as Enron. Make it difficult and the vendetta could sting. Point is…no one likes a spin doctor except the spin doctor himself. Be transparent. It’s in your best interest. And play nice.
When you get the urge to dish a tale as tall as Paul (Bunyan, that as), ask yourself: What am a hiding and, more importantly, why?