Communicating with brand values and culture

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June 6, 2016

By: Bernice Boucher, Managing Director, Strategic Consulting

The work environment’s configuration and expression are becoming critically important in communicating messages about a company’s culture and brand. More than driving internal engagement about the significance of the company’s work, cultivating a strong culture communicates to clients and investors the organization’s values and behaviors to set one apart from the competition.

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If your organization has a standard, corporate, “pleasant-but-bland” office environment, but wishes to be seen as innovative and future focused, how will you convey the latter image?
Even worse, if disengaged workers deal with your clients with a distinct lack of effort or energy, any further impression of an innovative brand will be completely destroyed. Research shows that engaged employees are more customer focused and care more about filling customer needs, leading to increased customer loyalty and advocacy.

Would you bring a friend to the office? Do you bring clients to the office or prefer to do business at a restaurant/café, where you find it more convenient? What message do these scenarios send?

In a survey of 3,000 workers, Gallup found that only 41 percent of employees felt that they knew what their company stood for and how it differed from the competition.

If your employees have little idea about what your company stands for, how effective will their client service be?

Effective workplace expression celebrates the company’s culture and demonstrates that employees’ are valued. It communicates—through a combination of office design, artifacts and systems—that the company appreciates its people and the contribution they make. It seeks to empower employees by giving them choice in their daily work habits. This not only boosts internal buy-in and direction, but also, works to harness and direct employees’ energy toward organizational goals. Effective workplace expression can turn your workers into “brand ambassadors.”

Workplace expression shifts the office from being just a pleasant comfortable background, to being an active cultural lever for shaping employee perceptions, motivations and behaviors. It transforms a “place of work” into “the best place to work for.” If employees believe they are part of the best workplace, they are going to produce their best work. If employees feel they are an important part of an organization’s journey, they will bring their best effort to achieve your goals.

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