Arik has a corporate culture of delayed flights and I don’t trust these airlines owned by politicians and badly managed by their friends. So I fly Aero an average of 10 times a month and none of their staffs has noticed me.
I sat back reclined on an Aero flight on my birthday, from the ticketing to reservation to the flight, no one noticed, and on that flight, a toddler cried all through and the air hostesses were clueless on how to help (I’m sure it’s not new when kids fly on phobia). With heavy flight turbulence 32, 000 feet above sea level and a child wailing, I thought, “What if they had a culture to personalise service or to go the extra mile?”
What’s your brand’s DNA, what’s your organisational corporate culture.
At this point, let me introduce what a corporate culture really is. A great team might have people from different backgrounds, so may seem to think differently, but yet alike (in core values, spirit, commitment and aspirations). Now that’s a corporate culture.
Why am I writing on corporate culture as a maven in brand and business strategy? Well, it’s because I’ve come to realise that when you get the company culture right, you attract the right people, then great customer service, business and a great brand will happen on its own. This is how Hexavia is being built.
Chevron is known for its healthy staffs. Maybe because of a culture that insists employees take regular breaks. In other words, the company shows it cares about the well-being of employees, and employees know that they are valued.
At a company called Zappos, new employees (who are usually broke) are offered $2,000 to quit after the first week of training if they decide the job isn’t for them. No one really does. Twitter employees are known for their midnight rooftop meetings, friendly co-workers and a team-oriented environment in which each person is motivated by the company’s goals.
This has helped put over 300 million of us on Twitter. Employees of Twitter can also expect free meals at the San Francisco headquarters, along with yoga classes and unlimited vacations for some. People are friends first.
Facebook is known for its stock options and easy workflows with everyone (even the CEO Mark Zuckerberg) working in the open office space alongside other employees. It’s an attempt at a flat organizational culture using the buildings and space itself to promote a sense of equality among the competition. Google is known for its hangouts, their employees have free meals, employee trips and parties, financial bonuses, open office policy and presentations by high-level executives with a pet friendly environment.
We have a client (a retail clothing store) called Ruff–n-Tumble. I’m proud to say that what we have created is an exciting place for kids (and even parents). A few months ago, I was having an initial meeting with another client, the staff and MD of Optimal Care Pharmacy in Kubwa Abuja and I said something in passive and I’m quite unsure they got it. I said, “Let’s always look at things through the eyes of the customers.
The brutal fact is that no one really likes drug stores. So we don’t want to be seen as pharmacists, we want to be seen as the next door neighborhood best friends, who just happens to be pharmacists. Now let’s create brand promises, touch points and SOPs around that”.
A great brand culture starts off with a series of accords called brand promises (stake holders-customers employees and share holders)
Our participants and clients call themselves Hexavians. Joining in with a great team, now that’s a whole tribe and nation we are subliminally building. We deliver value and in turn, they go the extra miles for us and even fund their own meet ups and parties. On my 30th birthday, we had a lavish blast and a turn Up at no cost. A few of them pulled that off. I remember one flying in that evening with his white colleague just to say Happy Birthday.
People have always asked how we have built such cult like followership with our clients and participants at Hexavia. We were off radio for a while, to a lot of businesses, that’s a cut off on major marketing and value proposition. But sincerely, those times became our most prosperous yet. This is because; we weren’t growing on marketing, but on value and referrals. This means that our customers had become evangelists for us. It didn’t just happen. It’s built on a DNA, #CorporateCulture
A company that is going somewhere must have a well-defined corporate culture with an immersion process for all of its human resources. I have about 10 points I won’t share yet (members of our HexavianBusinessClub will eventually get it). Take for example, point 1, can you replace that first day at work orientation with an entire on boarding process where the vision, core values, experiential design and SOP is administered deeply? The employees are then given a constant reminder as they stay in the organization that they belong to the same team, and share a common culture defined. This is achieved by graphical storytelling, chats, internal mentorship, trainings, reviews, tests and appraisals, hang outs, with KSS (Knowledge Sharing Sessions) being used as a viable tool for injecting the DNA of the brand’s core values into the team. //TO BE CONTINUED//…
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