Lance Armstrong, seven-time Tour de France champion officially commences his re-branding campaign with an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey show later this week.
According to media reports he is expected to admit to doping throughout his career in an attempt to save further embarrassment for his charity Livestrong, which he founded and has since stepped down from.
Armstrong’s past bullet proof shield of celebrity and philanthropy came to a sudden end once allegations were aired about his doping practices and stand over tactics to colleagues to keep them silent.
His celebrity and philanthropy masked his behaviours over many years and gave him a license to get away with what he did. This appalling behaviour will not be easily excused by the countless individuals and organisations that were effected by his actions.
We can be confident that Armstrong’s chutzpah will once again be on display with Oprah in a new softer manner that may include him saying ‘sorry’, presuming his legal team approves.
Will the re-branding exercise work long-term? Time will tell, but Lance Armstrong serves as a great lesson in personal branding case studies – lying, cheating and intimidating individuals is not the the example to set if you value your legacy. Many corporate chiefs among others may also choose to heed this lesson. What do you think?
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