A brand is who you are, what you want to be, and who people perceive you to be. Your employees play a key role in defining who you are, and what your organisation is perceived to be.
Employees are therefore central in creating a lasting brand experience. Their actions and attitudes in interacting with customers or clients, shapes opinions and perceptions your publics make of your brand. It is important to therefore build a brand culture that is a true reflection of what your organisation aspires to be.
Customer experience is at the heart of brand building. Customer is a king may pass off as a tired cliché putting it into practice can be quite challenging since employees behave differently as individuals. The challenge for business leaders is to ensure that employee espouse your brand promise. Any branding effort that is backed by a strong brand culture is often in vain.
Despite the relevance of brand culture to organisation’s success, marketing executives often leave building it to human resources. In an effort to encourage strong relationships between organisations and their employees, industry associations have come up with awards that recognise best employers. Unsurprisingly what we often consider to be the top brands such as MTN, SAB Miller, etc consistently come on top.
However a strong brand culture is not built by chest thumping as the recognised Best Employer. It takes a conscientious effort that involves internal re-alignment of marketing and human resource function to ensure that employees at the heart of business performance. Human resources and marketing need to harness their strength to create customer-centric employees.
Toyota one of the most successful global brands built its brand through a set of cultural principles that allows the company to operate so efficiently. Not The Toyota Way as it is known has become a case study on how to create successful corporations.