[This article was written by Brooke Chaplan.]
Regardless of the industry that you work in, competition may be fierce. Your company and the companies that you primarily compete against may often butt heads in different ways. While it may be easy at times to push the limits a bit too far, there are substantial reasons why you need to always play by the rules and avoid crossing over important lines. These are some of the primary issues that your company may face when you do not play by the rules.
The Legal Ramifications of False Advertising
False advertising is unfortunately common. These may be ads that are not factual in any way, or they may be misleading or deceptive in some way. When your ads overly dramatize the benefits of your company’s products or services or when they erroneously focus on drawbacks of your competition’s products or services, there is a possibility that your efforts could backfire. One possible outcome is that your company may be sued. Hiring commercial litigation attorneys to represent you in this type of legal matter can be avoided if you simply keep all of your marketing and advertising efforts aboveboard.
The Possibility of Contract Disputes
Depending on the industry that you work in, there may be instances when you may be tempted to skirt around some of clauses in a contract or to completely violate important terms of contracts that you have agreed to. The underlying reason for these unfortunate acts may be to gain a competitive edge, but the effort may be in vain. Remember that contracts are legal obligations, and you can be sued if you do not perform as you agreed to in a contract.
The Impact on Your Customers
Customers typically prefer to do business with companies that are honest and ethical. If they notice that your company is involved in lawsuits regarding false advertising, contract disputes or other matters, they may easily form a bad opinion about your company. It can be very difficult for some companies to overcome these types of public relations situations. In fact, you may notice that your sales plummet, you lose some of your top employees and other negative events occur.
While you understandably want to put everything that you can into your business to make it a success, the last thing that you want is to go too far. When you cross the lines in an effort to gain a competitive advantage, you could unfortunately jeopardize the success of your business going forward.
Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer based in New Mexico.