Living the brand

Here at Fifth Ring we spend a lot of our time developing ways for organisations to articulate their brands. It is fundamental to the way we launch a new brand to start internally. A brand is most at risk from failure from its own employees than any external forces. Employees are the most important assets an organisation can leverage to build its market position.

Employee engagement is not a new science and many organisations already recognise and implement programmes but the form of engagement currently practised can easily fall short of being truly transformational. The reasons are commonplace but simple to address.

Ownership of employee engagement tends to be the HR and communications teams whereas this needs to be shared by the leadership team, the drivers of the brand and business strategy.

Segmentation of the workforce is rarely considered and consequently communications can fail to engage with their intended audience.

Linking employee behaviours to the customer experience provides a meaningful context for the behaviours and brings company values to life.

Lastly, a lot of employee engagement activities ignore the potential of a brand to change employee behaviours and subsequently transform a business. Brand is predominantly customer perception and as such should define and guide employee performance.

Organisations that wish to effectively harness the power of their employees as a driver for business growth should consider redefining their ideas about employee engagement. The current model is based on activities and communications that share business goals with employees and demonstrate how various job functions support the goals.

These programmes do indeed connect the workforce with the business but the time is right to go even further. Employees have so much more potential to offer - their ideas, their passion and their commitment, all of which can contribute to a business achieving market leadership.

To achieve this it means adopting segmented brand-focused tactics that engage all your people as brand ambassadors and agents of change - from understanding to action and from action to initiative. A company's workforce is the essence of a brand in action and if they are energised and enthused, they will bring life to your brand. This will deliver your brand differential to the customer at every opportunity. In turn this connects employees, customers and business performance in a way that benefits all three.