Nothing new for employees and the general public, who had largely lost faith in Brand Kingfisher after a series of PR debacles.
The Mallya boys have got everything in the PR rule book wrong – and it’s not easy to go this wrong. Which is why we’ve stuck to brief sentences – there’s no point going through the details in the airline black box of this wreckage.
Siddhartha Mallya: London, Ladies and Lies
Siddhartha Mallya, the real owner of the Airlines was rumored to be in London even as employees were anxious about the then-awaited suspension of the airline license.
He was alternately allegedly also spotted at South Korea’s Yeongam for the Korean Grand Prix – not exactly the best photo-opp in a crisis, and tweeting about the 2013 Kingfisher Calendar when the company’s 2013 wasn’t certain on paper.
Even God Can’t Save the King of Good Times
When Vijay Mallya did decide to pay up, it wasn’t to his unpaid, exasperated and suicidal employees – (this included his pilots!) it was to a temple. 6 crores worth of gold – this showed that Mallya had lost faith in his employees, his airlines and himself – religious displays unlikely of the Mallya whose parties are the stuff of legend.
Everything about his ill-timed tweet amidst a flurry of media coverage has come true ; “Sensational headlines more speculative than fact based. Self styled expert commentators who are unqualified. Where is media taking us???”
Clearly the Kingfisher brand is in need of some serious repair – and as the old adage goes, real change must come from within. In this case, change must come from within the Mallya men – who can so easily be perceived as elitist and out of touch with the true state of their company, brand, and stakeholders.