6 CEOs apologizing on YouTube: Are franchise executives known for their Sincerity?

September 17, 2009

CrocodileTearsattention digital has an excellent post called 6 CEO apologies on YouTube.

Of the 6 distribution channels:

  • 2 are immediately identified as all-franchised (Domino’s and KFC),
  • 3 seem to 100% corporate (jetBlue, United Airlines and Mattel), and
  • 1 has both significant franchised and non-franchised (independent contractor and/or employee:employer relationships): Maple Leaf Foods.

I can only really speak directly about the risks and benefits of a corporation outsourcing the crucial food safety aspects of their product distribution.

It seems to me that CEOs and their Boards reap the benefits of a franchised distribution network (lower costs) but somehow want to avoid accepting responsibility for the risks of their business decisions. Treating franchisees as a cost to be driven to zero is a very, very short-sighted approach, in my opinion.

Workplace harassment and a franchisee “death by 1,000 small cuts” attitude can degenerate into a toxic environment, property damage, verbal and physical violence and much, much worse. All families have limits and there is no .

I have no doubt they are personally genuinely sorry for these events. They are sincere, absolutely.

But only time will tell whether they are sincere enough to work with (instead of against) reasoned, well-documented franchisee health and safety concerns. The history of modern franchising generally shows that franchise executives will always scapegoat rather than deal fairly.

  1. Did the executive  “know or should have reasonably been expected to know” of a certain risk?

Crocodile tears or false or insincere displays of emotion and blaming others only goes so far and predatory corporate cultures seldom change.

Have mercy on those CEOs who are judged a phoney-baloney in the face of an aroused group of franchisee families.


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