Given the current economic crisis — companies, government agencies and even individuals need to reevaluate how they operate — and how their actions will be perceived.
Northern Trust Corporation is the latest example of an outfit that doesn’t get it. The banking firm reportedly got $1.6 Billion taxpayer dollars in the recent bailout. This past weekend they hosted an annual PGA golf tournament outside of Los Angeles.
A golf tournament which raises money for charity – OK. But what about the events surrounding the sporting event? According to press accounts, Northern “hosted clients and employees at places like the Beverly Wilshire and Ritz Carlton hotels and gave away Tiffany souvenirs.” The company threw lavish parties with entertainment by Sheryl Crowe and the band Chicago.
When called on the matter, a spokesman for Northern dismissed the expenditures as:
“..part of a business decision regarding an annual event to show appreciation for clients.”
Wrong answer. When your company has just gone to the American taxpayer with a tin cup for a bailout — you should not show off a tin ear when describing the care with which you handle your financial assets.