Is Your Branding, Customer Service and Company Culture In Sync?
One of my favorite things to do is help entrepreneurs develop their brand. It’s an opportunity I don’t take lightly! Together we bring their vision and their dream to life. This process never gets old! Once we establish brand definitions and promises, once we talk target audience and visual identities, once we talk about the brand’s mission and core values, we have a conversation about culture and customer service.
You might think these three things are separate entities but they are not. They are all tied and the business that understands this is a business with happy employees, vendors and customers and a healthy bottom line.
Branding and Customer Service
I tell my clients that not only is branding reflected in your new logo and website, but it’s also reflected in how you answer the phone. It’s reflected in how you interact with clients on and offline. Do those encounters live up to your brand message and definition?
My friend and fellow business owner, Errol Allen is a customer service expert. We chatted on my podcast about four years ago on this very subject. How customer service not only reflects your brand and culture but how it impacts your bottom line. You can listen to the interview here.
Branding and Company Culture
Zappos has long been the poster child for company culture and branding done right. Ask any Zappos customer, employee or supplier and they will more than likely sing the company’s praises. Zappos was insistent from the beginning on developing a brand and culture that created an environment for all to thrive.
Uber, unfortunately, is the poster child for company culture gone horribly wrong. With allegations and reports of sexual harassment, bullying, and retaliation, Uber—a couple of CEOs later—is trying to change the company’s culture.
Setting Company Culture Needs to be Intentional
When you’re designing your logo and picking out colors, that’s the time to decide on your company’s culture. It’s the one thing you don’t want to leave to chance or unspoken.
Uber never had a written policy that specifically said to harass women employees and never allow them to advance within the company. (At least I hope not!) This hostile culture was built on behavior demonstrated by those in top management positions. It was the open secret everyone knew about. This bad behavior was not only tolerated but celebrated.
One of the founder’s and previous CEO made it quite clear through conversation and behavior that the tech company was about the hustle and that men did that far better than women.
When developing your company culture, ask yourself these questions:
- What kind of environment do you want to create for you and your team?
- How should team members and vendors interact?
- How should team members and customers interact?
- What values do you want to be represented in your company?
- How are those demonstrated by your team?
- How do you integrate social consciousness into your company culture and brand?
Remember your company culture and brand isn’t a set it once and done event. You should revisit and assess on a regular basis. Don’t leave your company culture to chance.