Daniel Gueguen

A few weeks ago, a consultant specialised in ‘e-reputation’ offered his services to me. I Googled him, and not without surprise, I discovered that…he has a bad reputation! From that moment, any possibility of us working together went out the window.

Every lobbyist has two assets: credibility and a network. A bad reputation kills credibility.

Emblematic files such as glyphosate are being handled in a farcical manner. Here, you are either on the right side or the wrong side. There is nothing in between. Any kind of dialogue is impossible.

Despite this, I believe Monsanto was wrong to refuse to appear at the European Parliament hearing on 11 October. Nobody should scorn elected representatives. This public arena is precisely where debate must take place.

Correcting inaccuracies, explaining the truth, recognising mistakes if required: that is how you restore your reputation. Any other approach just makes it worse.

Moreover, it was not Monsanto’s lobbyists who should have come to the Parliament hearing in Brussels, but rather the CEO of Monsanto Europe in person, as a mark of respect to the Institution and ensuring the company’s statements were delivered with the necessary authority and credibility.

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