31 May Building a Strong Brand Foundation
There I was….in the late 90’s as a mid-level manager, finally at my first board meeting with my company’s entire executive team. We came together to discuss the direction of our 1st annual report after a recent IPO. As discussions progressed, I quickly realized that our leadership team, from the CEO across all C-level positions did not agree, nor have common understanding of our Mission Statement! Our Mission Statement, the fundamental, key statement that unifies and directs internal operations and the foundation for messaging to our customers. No one in the meeting could recall, recite nor agree on what our mission statement was or should be. This spoke volumes to me about the importance of leadership cohesion on something so basic and common sense as a mission statement. I quickly realized we had bigger challenges than identifying a direction for our first annual report.
This was a HUGE Ahhh-HA moment on a few accounts:
#1- The importance of a commonly held mission at the top levels of the organization is critical in order to have a framework for shared beliefs, decision making, behaviors, values and communication. Without this common platform at the top, the organization will surely experience fragmentation and inefficiencies at the bottom.
#2- C-level leaders need facilitation and a framework to build consensus on a shared brand vision. I quickly became the facilitator of the leadership team to agree upon a mission statement that we could use in our annual report PLUS express throughout our culture and in marketing outreach to customers.
#3- A Brand Framework unifies and articulates the shared vision of a company, provides the guardrails for internal operations, and a foundation for all visual and communication expressions of the brand.
Since this revelation, I created a Brand Framework/Template I currently use with clients to help them achieve consensus on shared brand vision. Whether you are a start-up or a C-level executive in a large corporation, this structure is invaluable to your internal and external success. If you have brand communication platform in place, it’s good to update it as it can invigorate your organization and teams with new ways to ‘live’ your brand experience.
Download my FREE brand platform template here, use it with your team, or give us a call if you need support. [/vc_column_text]
Brand Vision, Internal Culture must be aligned to optimize customer acquisition, it's as simple as that!