Best Buy’s lax response lets PR crisis drag on for months

A tawdry scandal has cost the company its CEO and, ultimately, its founder/chairman. The fallout could have ended in December.

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During the last five months, retailer Best Buy saw how a lack of a clear response and action took its toll on the company. The trickle of news about an inappropriate relationship between the CEO and an employee went from bad to worse. It took down the chief executive, then found its way into the boardroom; the founder and chairman of the company submitted his resignation this week.

According to reports, the crisis began in December when Best Buy founder Richard Schulze confronted then-CEO Brian Dunn about his relationship with the employee, but Schulze never reported it to the rest of the board.

The news of the romance spiraled from there, with an audit committee investigating the incident. During the next few months, the top two executives for the company lost or left their jobs, and the company, looking to regain its footing among competitors, was dealt a huge blow.

Initial media coverage stated that the CEO’s resignation had to do with poor financial results, but the situation got worse with every revelation.

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