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Sustainability Essay

587 words - 3 pages

For unit 7, I decided to use the 2012 Chick-Fila PR disaster as my subject for this assignment. Chick Fila by definition have been a very conservative family business and follow a very biblical definition. Dan Cathy, the COO of Chick Fila sparked massive outrage on their views regarding gay marriage and this questioned their sales, products and services they provide to the fast food industry. From Jeff Swartz, Dan Cathy could have utilized some diplomacy. Rather than leaving the issue to government and politics, Dan Cathy when asked about his views, he said “guilty as charged” which made the situation worse. Just as Jeff Swarz was open to the idea of change and he personally responded to each one of his angry protestors, Chick Fila could have easily practiced good PR considering their position in the ...view middle of the document...

Afterwards, Dan Cathy tweeted: "Sad day for our nation; founding fathers would be ashamed of our gen. to abandon wisdom of the ages re: cornerstone of strong societies." This shows Chick Fila’s stance on gay marriage however, it is even worse PR to use a social media platform to say something like that, especially after your company is already going through a PR disaster. The tweet was deleted but not before it was seen by the nation and archived. Essentially, good PR includes a few things. For one, if you don’t want to see it, hear about it or read it, simply don’t say it. We don’t know if Dan Cathy intentionally made the comments or it was an ignorant mistake but if you do make a mistake, be more diplomatic in the aftermath. Chick Fila should have also gotten some internal and external support for whatever their views are. At the end of the day, Chick Fila is still a service business and they cannot discriminate against their employees. Notes to business leaders…do not offend your #1 brand ambassadors: your employees. Offending your customers will only damage your brand loyalty as Jeff Swartz learned the difficult way. I feel if Dan Cathy had thought about his words before saying them, politics would not have been involved. Now, politicians use the Chick Fila crisis to advance their own agendas. It’s crazy how big of an impact a few words can have on a nation. The other side of the argument says that Mr. Cathy hit a PR homerun by increasing his company’s sales and the profits of his vendors. Just like Swartz, Cathy is now forgotten in the general public. Most people do not think twice about eating at Chick Fila today or about Cathy’s comments. Under every PR disaster, I believe there’s always a misunderstanding and perhaps the public will never know about Chick Fila or Timberland but multi-national companies can learn from the past and their competitors to keep the consumer happy and problem-free.

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