The Power of Goodwill in Politics & PR

Goodwill may sound fuzzy wuzzy but it is a critical component of any long-term public relations program, political careeer, or any public or private endeavor. New York Governor Eliot Spitzer may have survived his prostitution sex scandal but the reality is that he had very little goodwill, even among Democrats. Spitzer built his career as a prosecutor and politician willing to steamroll any perceived opponent or wrongdoer. He was the self-righteous ethical authority determined to force his will and his values on everybody else. The only person who could live up to those impossibly high standards, apparently, was Spitzer – until he fell. That’s because those standards are impossible.

David A. Paterson, the new Governor of New York StateEvery person and every company makes mistakes. We are willing to forgive based on how much we believe in that person or that company.  Goodwill is established and developed every day by every action. Your enemies don’t go away, they wait until you are weak before they pounce.

By all accounts, the man who will take over as Governor of New York on Monday,  David A. Paterson (left), has spent his career building goodwill.  Facing a highly divided state legislature and a populous reeling after the stunning resignation of Spitzer, he will need all the goodwill he can muster, especially after he stumbles.

Goodwill: An intangible asset which provides a competitive advantage, such as a strong brand, reputation, or high employee morale. In an acquisition, goodwill appears on the balance sheet of the acquirer in the amount by which the purchase price exceeds the net tangible assets of the acquired company. – from Investorwords


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