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Integrating brand and culture

We’ve known the importance of brand for a really long time, but what we haven’t realised until more recently is how our company culture impacts that.

Companies like Google and Starbucks are really the driving forces behind this kind of innovation. Their company cultures are clear to see. Their staff all behave in a similar way, their offices and branches are similarly decorated, and they know how to make their company culture clear to their clients. This subconsciously makes us feel safe and secure. Most of us like their branding, and this is driven by their culture, which makes us feel secure and taken care of.

If you have a company, integrating your brand and culture is really important. If you’re trying to portray your company as innovative and forward thinking but your staff aren’t acting in this manner, that absolutely will come across. For this reason, it is really important you integrate your brand and culture.

In this article, we’ll help you do it.


What is company culture?

Company culture is the shared values, attributes and characteristics of your organisation. They should be shared right from the top down to the very bottom. If your company has an extremely formal, corporate attitude, that’s something that should start at your chief executive and run right through to your organisation to your junior staff.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you have a really relaxed attitude to dress code and the way you speak to clients, that’s something that should be promoted.

Company culture should be obvious through the work environment, company mission, leadership style, values, ethics, expectations and goals.

It’s also referred to as organisational culture, corporate culture, and workplace culture.

Company culture might be deliberately created, or it might result from decisions and growth over time. Whatever your company culture is, your employees will respond to it, and it will help them. understand how they should behave in response to anything that happens at work.


How to integrate brand with company culture

Integrating brand and culture is sometimes called ‘fusion’. That’s the perfect way to describe it, because your company brand and culture should be interlocked – fused together – so that your clients know what to expect from you, and your employees know how to respond.

The first thing you need to do if you want to integrate your brand with your company culture is clearly define both.

This doesn’t have to be a chore. It can be really fun, actually. You can set up a range of tasks to encourage your team to come forward and tell you what they think your company brand and culture are, and then decide on new ones if you feel like you need them.

You’ll then need to put the correct elements in place to push your company brand and culture forward, and that will need to happen at all levels. Your CEO will need to be as committed and present through the integration process as absolutely everyone else.

It’s a good idea to choose several champions of the change, and these people will be in equal parts productive and responsible. They’ll make sure the integration of brand and culture is taking part amongst all teams, holding employees responsible when they are not participating, and making this integration a key part of their role.

You’ll need to set proper milestones, so that you know when you should reach new targets, and have a set of measurable key performance indicators, agreed, as far as possible, with the input of the entire team.

And you’ll need to plan very carefully for resistance or other potential hiccups. Because they absolutely will happen.


How do I plan for stumbling blocks?

One of the most difficult parts of bringing brand and culture together is planning for curve balls, which can derail your progress. They can come in all sorts of forms. Perhaps one of your champions leaves their job half way through your transition period, or a particular staff member is not happy about change, and is therefore refusing to take part. When these things happen, you’ll need to know how to respond. In fact, knowing how to respond to this kind of negativity should be part of your brand and culture to begin with.

It’s a minefield. If you think you need extra support, you should consider employing a change management consultant. These people are specially trained to assist in these processes, and can save you lots of time, which will save you money in the long run.

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