“Culture is simply a shared way of doing something with a passion.” – Brian Chesky, Co-Founder, Airbnb
Having a great company culture is so important to a brand’s well-being. Especially today. Employees are looking for an experience they can call their own, and employers are looking for fresh ways to encourage productivity. A company’s internal culture, if tuned correctly, can meet both these needs. It’s really the heart and soul of your brand. It will build character, encourage better customer service, and build the brand both internally and externally. Here are four fundamentals we recommend for building brand culture.
1. Hire Great People—Once you’ve developed a solid brand foundation and know what the personality of your brand is, use it as a recruiting tool. Talent will always be important, but discovering people who are the right fit can make your company hum. If your brand is outgoing and fun with lots of energy, you’ll want to hire outgoing people who reflect this. Make sure client interaction conveys that energy, whether it’s coming from upper management or the accounting department. FOX Rehabilitation is a current BOLTGROUP client and they’re great at finding people who are an ideal fit for their brand—passionate, driven, and high-energy. To support this, we’ve helped them develop recruiting campaigns to attract these types of clinicians to advocate for their brand.
2. Lead by Example—Great leaders inspire in so many ways. BOLTGROUP works with mid-market companies to develop their brands and their position in the marketplace We always encourage the leaders of these companies to promote the brand internally as well as externally. That means taking time to ensure that everyone on the team is living and working by the pillars and purpose of the brand’s foundation. Regardless of title or position, each employee should operate in a manner that supports your brand.
3. Encourage Collaboration—No matter what your industry, encouraging collaboration among employees can lead to new ideas and a unified front. It doesn’t mean you have to tear down the walls and pull everyone up to a single large desk. Instead, find designated areas for collaboration and inspiration. Here at BOLTGROUP, we have what’s called “The Innovation Lab.” It’s a war room with pin-up space on all sides, one large table in the center and bright orange chairs to fit our brand. It’s a space for exploration, ideation, and community. With BOLTGROUP having two sides to its business—brand experience and product innovation—designating a common space for ideation gives us a place to practice the ideals of our brand, regardless of the project. We often start and end the week in this room, but at any given time great ideas are brewing there!
4. Community Outreach—Don’t let your brand culture be confined by the walls of your office. Encourage your team to become active in the community; to be a public figure for your brand. But remember to keep it on brand. For example, as a group of like-minded creatives, BOLTGROUP has active members in the American Institute of Graphic Artists (AIGA), and we frequently attend creative events that give back to charitable organizations. Our client Doerre Construction produces a powerful brand impact by teaming up with Rebuilding Together of Greater Charlotte, where they practice their craft and rebuild homes for those in need.
There are many ways to promote a healthy company culture internally. Just remember, once you have passionate people inside your business, it becomes easy to promote your brand externally. Only then will the experience be rooted in truth.