What's in Tiger Wood's Golf Future?

Tiger Woods marital problems have dominated the news since his car crash of Nov 27th, 2009. The public perception of his personal integrity has been damaged and sponsors like Gillette, Accenture, Kellogg, Gatorade and Tag Heuer  have reduced or cut his lucrative sponsorship contracts. His marriage may be headed for divorce court. And he has withdrawn from professional golf  ‘indefinitely’ to focus on being a better father, husband and person.

This sensational story has dominated the news daily and with great public interest. Why? What are the lessons to be learned here (aside from being faithful to your wife)?  For customer satisfaction managers and executives, this story can be used to demonstrate how customer satisfaction principles apply. What is customer satisfaction anyways? Why is there such a public interest in this story? What are all the elements that failed? Who were Tiger Woods’ customers?  What is the perspective of each of these stakeholders? I have summarized these issues an article called Tiger Woods’ crash and Customer Satisfaction.

Tiger has a reputation to mend. There are companies that call themselves reputation management companies, but they do not normally deal with issues this  severe. They normally deal with internet based comments and focus on hiding or eliminating the evidence on the web.  There are public relations firms and lawyers that specialize in handling scandals and public outrage. I am sure Tiger has engaged some of the best and puts his own personal stamp on how things get orchestrated based on his personal style. Who knows what else will be uncovered in the weeks and months to come?

This continuing saga will unfold, with much public fanfare and scrutiny. There is no question that Tiger Woods is a great golfer. Can his reputation be mended over time?  What do you think?

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Adele Berenstein

Adele Berenstein is an Experienced Customer Satisfaction Executive, recently retired from a Large Global IT Organization after a long productive management career including Sales, Marketing, Services, teaching and education center management and most recently, 19 years in customer satisfaction management. She turned around divisions with customer satisfaction problems, implemented measurable improvements and management systems, and implemented programs to prevent problems from ever affecting customers.

9 Responses to “Customer Satisfaction lessons from the Tiger Woods Infidelity Saga”

  1. Andrew Says:

    I am sure many feel he should be condemned to permanent public disgrace despite his spectacular skills as a golfer. As crass as it sounds, whether or not his reputation can be mended sufficiently for him to recover his halo and a significant amount of his sponsorships depends to a large extent on who else amongst the worlds sports celebrity elite can rise to take his place. Aside from the brinkmanship and possible friendships with Tiger himself which may give others reason to pause before profiting at Tiger’s expense, this is the real issue. He is damaged goods, seriously damaged goods!

    If no one rises to fill the void left by his abdication, the commercial interests will conspire in attempting to rebuild Tiger Woods endorsement empire because they need him at least as much as he needs them. And they may succeed until a viable alternative to Tiger as their spokesperson appears and as long a celebrity endorsements remain a prized corporate asset for hawking your wares. This valuation placed on celebrity endorsement may in fact be put in jeopardy by the Woods affair as many of his sponsors will feel blindsided. The lesson for many companies will be “never let this happen again to us, no matter how saintly the source of the endorsement appears to be”.

    So this serial adultery of Tiger’s may well by the tipping point for changing the entire market for celebrity endorsement.

    Because of this and in the event that he may be displaced in the public eye by the next sacrificial celebrity, I will say here that Tiger will NEVER be the same, as a golfer he will be distracted as a public figure he is irreparably disgraced. He may be a contender, but will not dominate the way he has. He will lose that magical edge that made him Tiger Woods. The public outrage and morbid curiosity in his problems will get to him and he will continue to withdraw and hide away into his money, as he has already done. The reason I say this is because all evidence to date of his sordid personal life reflects an amoral disdain for the values which society at least publicly still maintains on a pedestal, and one flouts these at his peril. Unfortunately there is no shortage of examples through history of public figures leading lives of extraordinary hypocrisy, such as Woods has done. So in the end what will govern is that people will come to realize that they have been played, their emotions have been trifled with, and they will want to lash out in a movement to punish Woods which will grow which will limit his return to anything near his former glory.

    There are some things which can not be undone and this is one of them.

    Andrew

  2. Adele Says:

    Thank you Andrew

    To your point this video came out on the impact to Nike.

  3. Shirlee Cannizzo Says:

    Excellent read, I just passed this onto a colleague who was doing a little research on that. And he actually bought me lunch because I found it for him smile So let me rephrase that: Thanks for lunch!

  4. Irvin Stormo Says:

    I admire the valuable information you offer in your articles.I enjoying reading your post. You make great points in a concise and pertinent fashion, This is a really good read for me, many thanks to the author

  5. Adele Says:

    Shirlee

    I am glad you liked the post and I hope you enjoyed your lunch. Feel free to subscribe to my blog posts and have a summary sent to your email or your RSS feed.

    Adele

  6. Adele Says:

    Irwin

    Thanks for your comments. If you like, you can sign up to receive my blog post summaries directly through your email at http://bit.ly/6iuG3z, or on the side of this page or through my RSS feed.

    Thanks

    Adele

  7. Adele Says:

    Andrew, a new report has come out that shows the ‘Shareholder Value Destruction
    following the Tiger Woods Scandal’. It is estimated to be between 5 and 12 Billion. see http://bit.ly/6pTf8c for the report.

    Thanks

    Adele

  8. Stop Foreclosure Says:

    I found your blog because I wanted more information. The content you have on your blog needs to be discovered so I have added you to my Google News Reader. I really look forward to reading more posts from you.

  9. how to gain muscle fast Says:

    Crazy crap with Mr.Woods, huh?Have many of his sponsers pulled out on him yet?

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