All successful businesses present a face or a personality. It is a device that helps businesses speak with their target audience and for customers to identify with the brand. A brand personality allows consumers to better interpret the values of the business. Marketing messages are made consistent and identity is solidified.
What is Business Personality?
A business personality, much like human personalities, is an intricate mix of strengths, weaknesses, response, action, values, customs and so much more. For a business to successfully understand their personality, an examination of goals, values and reactions must be made. It is with this information at hand that a business can begin to create structure around existing elements of the business and develop the face it wants to present.
Business leaders must collaborate to identify the values and goals of the business and how these align with the preferred audience. For example, an eCommerce business that sells women’s clothing at discount rates aimed at the youth market might develop a brand personality, or voice, that is youthful, feminine, fun and include highly visual content with a carefree and adventurous spirit.
Such a voice is aimed at appealing to a specific audience who will identify with the message. While there has been some pushback from youth against fast fashion, it is a robust industry with impulsive online buyers motivated by wanting to identify with the ‘beautiful’ people in the images who represent their ‘tribe’.
Internally, your business personality needs to communicate your values and expectations to employees. While your forward-facing personality is youthful and free-spirited, your internal personality might be nurturing, focused and expectant.
Factors Contributing To a Strong Organizational Personality
Whatever direction you choose to go in with your brand personality (outward) and organizational personality (inward), what matters is consistency. If one of your values is the ending of human trafficking and slavery which is promoted as a point of difference for your brand, you must also behave in a way that shows commitment to such values within your organization. That means knowing your supply chain, understanding the many businesses that you work with and rely on and also treating your employees at least in line with UN human rights norms and local government regulations.
You can better understand what subtle organizational traits you might already be working with by examining the following aspect of your values, business plan and employee commitments:
- A prudent, clear and well-defined growth strategy
- Focused vision and concentration on goal achievement
- Preparedness for calculated risk-taking
- The positive action in a changing business environment
- Unwavering confidence in strategies implemented
- Unambiguous operating requirements and internal rules
- Exemplary reward systems for employees
- Generation of interest and enthusiasm in both employees and customers
- A customer-driven approach to R&D and marketing
Understanding and Maintaining a Business Personality
Your business personality is part of your brand. It represents your organisation’s values and message, as well as guiding the actions of your company. You need to develop ways to deal with critical issues relating to changes and improvement in both external and internal organizational efficiency, effectiveness and accountability.
Your voice needs to be consistent for two major reasons: growth and stability. If you share a consistent message, you develop your integrity and your place in the industry. When people know what to expect from your organisation, be it in the marketplace or internally, they can better predict your business growth, security and worth. Developing this level of trust requires a commitment to promoting and standing by agreed values that are shared in a consistent way.
Organizational Personality Development
The biggest tests that your company will face are in times of change. Your organisation needs to a solid foundation, a clear set of values that underpin your operations so that you are able to make decisions fast, present a steady and sound organisational front and support employees.
Your business personality is vital when faced with challenges, whether that be an attack on your integrity, questions of professional conduct, ownership of errors or other issues that are only related to your business. If you understand your values and how to apply them, you will present with responses that are consistent. You will be able to make decisions about how, if and when to protect your business, industry or employees. You will know how to structure marketing campaigns. Making business alliances will be easy as you will attract like-minded contemporaries. Targeting your buyers will be simplified as you will be better equipt to respond to changing trends or follow controversial industry issues with sensitivity.
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