The following three steps could’ve ensured that Nike wasactually paying attention to the rising criticism and attempting to addressthem – Firstly, Knight as the CEO could’ve made sure that local translatorswere used while interviewing the workers. Secondly, the primary objective ofthe report could’ve been to try and address the main issue of factory wages.Thirdly, rather than using photos and a wishy-washy kind of format, Nikecould’ve instructed specifically to use statistics and data which would’vemaintained the sanctity of the report.Nike executives had consistently argued that they weretargets of an uninformed media campaign, pointing out that although Nike wasbeing monitored by activists and the media, no one was monitoring the monitors.Such claims were nothing but instances of futile attempts to restore publicrelations. There was denial all the way right from the beginning, andrather than accepting faults and taking a strong step towards effectivelyhandling the critics, Nike was acting like a child caught stealing and itshoarse cries failed to have any effect on its criticsA debate ensued around the topic of market wages and whilelabor activists argued that workers in the developing nations were overworkedand paid minimal wages, which were not enough for sustenance, Economists, onthe contrary, argued that wages were driven by market forces.
Paul Knightcould’ve taken a stance and decided to at least make sure that Nike paidattention to the working conditions. The Young Report although slammed by oneStephen Glass gained negative popularitybecause of its method of research. Later on, it was found that Glass’s work hadbeen fictional and lacked solid ground. Knight could’ve taken this opportunity to make a comeback by arrangingfor an independent audit at that very moment to display Nike’s commitmenttowards bettering the lives of the workers in Indonesia. That would’ve beenseen as a positive step on Nike’s side.
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