A lot of effort goes into developing a community’s reputation or brand just like the brands for corporations and products. But can the way a community responds to the issue of coal tar sealants alter that image?
A recent presentation in Springfield, Missouri got me thinking more about this. Does simply knowing about a problem devalue your brand as a place? Is it affected positively or negatively based upon the actions or in-actions of the community leaders? While some view actions against coal tar sealants as reactionary, anti-business behavior, others see it as thoughtful, independent and environmental. Conversely how is a community perceived that knew a lot about this issue, but did nothing about it? With more and more media attention on this all of the time, the number of people adding to those perceptions is growing.
The video is a 5 minute presentation by the former Mayor Pro Tem of Springfield, Dan Chiles. He states that very concern. He asks if their community “brand” will be negatively affected by national publicity about Springfield rejecting a ban of coal tar sealants there in 2010. No other community has known more and done less to date.
Fortunately, the last word on this has not yet been written. According to last week’s Springfield newspaper, the issue appears to have been resurrected by Councilmember Cindy Rushefsky and assigned to a committee. Stay tuned.