Johnson & Johnson: The alva Reputation Case Study
Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has long been admired as a leading light in purpose-led businesses and a pioneer in a more balanced, stakeholder- rather than shareholder-centric model of doing business.
The origins and application of its Credo have been exhaustively covered in business schools, and numerous articles and business books, including in The Connecting Leader, written by alva’s Founder and CEO.
The handling of Tylenol crisis in 1982 where seven people died in the Chicago area after taking cyanide-laced capsules of Extra-Strength Tylenol, is considered one of the best crisis management case studies. What set apart J&J’s handling of the crisis was that it placed consumers first by recalling 31 million bottles of Tylenol capsules from store shelves and offering replacement product in the safer tablet form free of charge.
The world is very familiar with a particular face of J&J – the consumer-first, parent and baby friendly corporate giant which sets and adheres to standards that most other businesses would love to emulate.
So what, therefore, are we to make of the series of allegations and lawsuits that have dogged J&J in the past 48 months, from litigation over its baby talc, to faulty pelvic mesh implants, to blood thinner deaths, to the company’s role in the opioid crisis?
What has this actually done to J&J’s reputation?