Introducing important brand changes can be an exciting time for an organization. A new brand vision can open business opportunities, streamline processes, and breathe life into an organization. However, to fully reap the benefits, an organization must invest in the excitement of their employees.
A new brand vision can mean major organizational changes, which may lead to employee insecurities. When employees lack the confidence and excitement needed to progress a new brand vision, the organization will have to work through the friction.
Where Is This Friction Coming from?
Developing a new brand vision in the board room can be fairly straightforward process. Top executives develop goals, review test variables, and assign management teams to oversee the new brand. The challenging part is in building the excitement and momentum needed to propel these new ideas forward and diminishing old habits.
Organizations that experience excessive friction against their new brand vision tend to do so because of a lack of employee engagement. When employees are shut out of the process, they feel a lack of representation and ownership in the changes being made. This disconnect to the brand vision can lead to employees giving minimal effort, hurting organizational morale, and creating missed business opportunities.
The Lack of Engagement Epidemic
With employee engagement playing a vital role in the organization’s ability to take a new brand vision, employee engagement rates for U.S. companies is surprisingly low. A recent poll by Gallup asked workers across multiple industries if they understood how their organization differentiated from their competitors. When the response data was examined by role, they found1:
- 46% of managers knew how their company is different from their competitors.
- 37% of employees knew how their company is different from their competitors.
- 9% of other (non-executive, non-manager) employees knew how their company is different from their competitors.
In organizations where employees frequently interact with customers, having excited employees who are putting their best foot forward is vital to the success of a new brand vision. The key to improving employee engagement is by making it easier for employees to offer their ideas on the process.
Build Engagement into The Process
Make Your Branding a Two-Way Street
You can’t have employee engagement if employees aren’t communicating. A major reason why the percentage of employees who understand how their organization is different from their competitors decreases, from management to employees, is because employees aren’t enabled to communicate brand goals.
To break this norm, organizations should reward employees for voicing their concerns and questions about the new brand. Since employees are on the front lines, they’ll be the first to signal the alarms about products or services falling short of meeting their new brand promises.
Design Your Organization for Engagement
Communication is fruitless if organizational policies and structures aren’t designed to serve the new brand vision. When employees have questions about new policies, brand priorities and values, they should have access to information.
Designing new policies and structures is a lengthy process of trial and error. Organizations can accelerate this process by observing how well employees are engaging with the new brand and develop new policies that repeat successes. To ensure that your brand vision is being realized, organizations should consistently measure its performance.
Measuring performance to scale can be challenging. To help link performance goals across complex channels, we developed our Store Relationship Management (SRM) platform, CoEFFICIENT®. This platform works by opening communication about organizational goals and performance, between the corporate office, the field, and store managers.
Employees are more invested in the success of a new brand vision when they are engaged with the process. Designing organizational policies and structures that allow employees to communicate their ideas and concerns builds excitement—motivating employees to put forth their fullest effort.
To learn more about how our CoEFFICENT Reviews delivered a consistent brand experience for Infiniti, download our case study. Using CoEFFICIENT Reviews, Infiniti was able to increase field adoption by 38%, allowing dealership reviews to happen faster and dealers understood what actions to take to deliver a positive brand experience.
1. John F and Dan W. “Your Employees Don’t ‘Get’ Your Brand”. Gallup. http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/156197/employees-don-brand.aspx ↩