When Sachin Lost His Cool With British Airways – Strategy With RS

Sachin Tendulkar, the living legend, was at the receiving end of ‘don’t care attitude of British Airways’.
It managed to do what even Australian could not do through high voltage sledging – getting Sachin to lose his cool.


He tweeted to vent his frustration,


BA realising the gravity of the tweets, responded. But it seems they delegated the task of assuaging Sachin to a ‘machine’ – the BA tweet read,


It was a loose delivery – any tweet, bowled by BA & Sachin’s fans took up cudgel on his behalf to avenge the insult heaped on their God!

If you were BA, how would you have handled this Reputation management issue?

Every Reputation Management can be classified into either of the two categories:

1. Competency Issue: If a company / brand, inadvertently makes an error & upon becoming aware apologises, then chances are that they will be forgiven.

2. Integrity Issue : A company knowingly commits an error & apologies when it is caught . In such situations the company cannot hope to get away by merely apologising – it will have to be ready to be penalised.

Take the BA episode. It should have done an internal assessment / due diligence to see if the error was committed knowingly or unknowingly. If it was committed unknowingly, then BA should have publicly apologised to Sachin. Chances are that Sachin & his fans would have graciously forgiven BA.
But if the due diligence conclude that the was mistake ‘knowingly’ committed, then they should not only publicly apologise but also self penalize themselves.
If you wish to get a better understanding of what constitutes Reputation management & what your response should be when embroiled in it, then I would invite you to read my article, published earlier, ‘Reputation Management: What to do when your brand is hit by a scandal’.

The article also has a video embedded in it which will succinctly sum up the key issues that you need to remember about Reputation Management issues & more importantly how to handle it should your company ever get embroiled in it.





In this series, Rajesh Srivastava, Business Strategist and Visiting Faculty at IIM Indore gives you a regular dose of strategy case studies to help you think and keep you one step ahead as a professional as compared to your peers. Rajesh is an alumnus of IIM Bangalore and IIT Kanpur and has over 2 decades of experience in the FMCG industry. All previous Strategy with RS posts can be found here