The Galliano moral

Could this be an embarrased John Galliano?
The fashion world was taken by storm earlier this week after fashion house Christian Dior sacked its creative director John Galliano. The flamboyant designer was videotaped making anti-Semitic comments in a Paris bar, which led to a rapid response from the fashion label.

The scandal could have not come at a worst time: the renowned fashion house is scheduled to present its fall-winter prĂȘt a porter collection on Friday as part of Paris fashion week. In addition, Natalie Portman’s spokesperson announced that the Oscar winner does not wish be associated with John Galliano following his anti-Semitic remarks.

The story is particularly interesting because it illustrates how one’s public image intertwines with one’s personal life. In the days of social media and citizen journalism, you can never be too careful when speaking your mind; a work colleague or even the person sat next to you in a restaurant may just be a prolific blogger with an eye for the sensational.

Secondly, the speed of response from the fashion house, hours after the video was made public, testifies to the ethics of the company, assuming responsibility for its employees and the message it sends out. The management team at Dior understands the destructive potential of such an outburst of personal opinion and, as valuable a designer as Galliano may be, no one can afford this kind of negative publicity.

This lesson is a very important one for any type of organization seeking to convey the right image to its public, whether you are a high end designer label or a component level manufacturer. When considering engineering communications, always make sure that the people involved in it subscribe to your organisation’s values and message. You don’t know who is a Blogger, citizen journalist or avid social media correspondent and bad news travels fast.
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Oana Baetica - Engineering Communications

Stone Junction is a cool technical PR agency based in Stafford. We work for all sorts of businesses, with a particular focus on technology, technical and engineering companies. We like being sent cake and biscuits by clients, journalists and prospects.

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