Inspiring a shared vision of a company is a challenge for a team of any size, and that challenge grows as the company does. Dr. Matthew Geller discusses how he works to inspire a shared vision throughout CovalentCareers and how and why a brand book can help to support a company’s growth.
“In the early days, when we were building CovalentCareers out of my side bedroom...it was easy to inspire a shared vision.” When a company or even a single team, is getting off the ground, there is little to no room for messages to get diluted or miscommunicated. When you can literally turn around to talk to your entire team, face to face, lines of communication are simple and direct, but as you expand it becomes exponentially more difficult.
“Decisions should be “passed through the filter that is your organization: its brand promises, its core values…”
As CEO, Dr. Geller’s mission became to establish a set of guiding principles and rules to help the team on their journey. “I can get up on a soapbox at our monthly meetings...and inspire, but that’s not enough.” The idea then is to create something that is consistently delivering your vision and message, not a one-off speech or bout of encouragement. Your team will be making decisions every day, whether they are on the phone with customers or planning massive annual budgets, and at each step, at each level, those decisions should be “passed through the filter that is your organization: its brand promises, its core values…”
Part of Dr. Geller’s solution came to him after reading Scaling Up by Verne Harnish. He worked to create a brand book that serves to reiterate the organization’s guiding light and principles. If a member of the team is faced with a difficult decision, they can consult the brand guide which outlines things like the organization's:
- BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)
- Brand promises
- Tone of voice
- Brand pillars
- Problem it is trying to solve
- Core values
Having these readily accessible for every member of the team can help direct brand-focused and brand-driven decision making at every turn.