If you haven't thought through your response to the #MeToo conversation, now's the time. What would you say to a group of thousands of loyal customers, when your message could be splashed across the internet, in social media and a viral video? That's what happened recently to Tony Robbins, and the famed life coach found himself apologizing this weekend, big time.
Robbins posted an apology on Facebook on Sunday for suggesting that women were using the #MeToo movement "to try to get significance and certainty by attacking and destroying someone else" in a video that went viral on Friday, eliciting a backlash across social media.
Robbins made the comments at his "Unleash the Power Within" event in San Jose, California. Prices to attend the event ranged from a few hundred to $3,000. He said to a large crowd, "If you use the MeToo movement to try to get significance and certainty by attacking and destroying someone else, you haven't grown an ounce. All you've done is basically use a drug called significance to make yourself feel good." Robbins also praised Steve Wynn, the casino magnate who has been accused of sexual assault.
When a woman in the audience challenged him, he claimed, "I'm not knocking the MeToo movement. I'm knocking victimhood." Before putting his hand against hers and pushing her backward. When she pushed against him, he asked why she was resisting and suggested she was wrong to believe that pushing back would make her safer.
He also claimed that women were hurting their careers by speaking out, stating that more than a dozen executives he knew were now hesitant to hire attractive women to their staff, even if they were more qualified, because it was too big of a risk.
In his apology statement, Robbins said that his comments "failed to reflect the respect I have for everything Tarana Burke and the #MeToo movement has achieved," referencing the woman who is credited with starting the movement. He also apologized for suggesting "anything other than my profound admiration for the #MeToo movement." A call to Robbins's spokeswoman was not returned by publication time.