Bad PR only collateral damage as Qantas' Joyce fights long-term fiscal battle

While the growing commentariat looks to “tut tut” on any and every move with a whiff of differing opinions, the reality of the Qantas strike situation is simply this: the airline is focused – Exocet-like – on a goal of staunching losses to and repositioning its international business. To do this, it needs to manage staff/operating costs – and that means outsourcing cost bases where possible. In forcing FairWork Australia to help bring strike action to an end, Qantas has doubtless weighed the cost of negative short-term PR it will accrue, and deemed it mere collateral damage in a skirmish that’s part of a much bigger battle. Bad PR, in this case, isn’t as important as long term revenue management. In today’s media environment, which should bring searing scrutiny to corporate and government decisions, we instead see a ‘forget if not forgive’ attitude from customers and stakeholders. This bad news story will blow over. It seems to me, that reputation damage isnt as influential or telling as it once might have been – the blighted and maligned recover more quickly than in the past; shame or remorse fade as quickly as the news agenda changes it appears to me.

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