question hour

Harish Bijoor | Updated on January 15, 2018

All eyes on Brand Tata A view of Bombay House, the Tata Group’s headquarters, in Mumbai.   -  PAUL NORONHA

Many facets to an employer brand

What are the facets to an employer brand? The Tata group has come to the fore on this count of negativity. What are the repercussions on Brand Tata?


Anjali, first, I disagree that Brand Tata is facing any negative repercussions as an employer brand due to the current boardroom issue. Time will tell. Brand Tata is much bigger than all that. This issue has stirred the brand, not shaken it.

A strong employer brand is a sum of employee images. What does the employee think of the company at large? And more importantly what do the spouse and family of the employee think of the company? Does the employer brand evoke sentiment that is positive or negative? Do you see the employer as a god who provides all, nurtures and takes care of all? Or as a devil only milking work from you? Or worse still, do you see the employer brand as a wolf in sheep’s clothing? Someone who gets you to work hard and when the time comes, and when the chips are down, may not want to stand by you.

There are many facets to an employer brand, then. A strong employer brand is one that leaves in you the thought that you work for a good company. A secure company. A company where you will not need to wonder where your next meal will come from.

Interestingly, the Tata brand is not about hire-and-fire at all. To an extent the Tata employer brand is not a company, but a way of life. And that remains its strength in a world of work where everything has changed rapidly. To an extent, the Tata brand preserves the old way. And guess what, that refreshingly makes it stand apart from the rest, while everyone else has abandoned the old way. And that’s branding, for sure, strong employer branding.

Brand endorsers are going to be in trouble for endorsing brands that don’t stand up for what they are. Is the step a bit too harsh? Why?


Rohit, I do believe this is a much needed step to bring in responsibility among brand endorsers. This will make potential brand endorsers show a greater degree of interest in the product or service before they sign the dotted line. They need to understand that brand endorsement is not a fling. It is a marriage. A marriage that can take you to the courts, even!

Greater responsibility and a strong belief in brand due diligence will come in now, for sure. In addition, consumer interest is going to count greater than brand interest.

Published on November 24, 2016

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