I've written and spoken (a lot) about brand. What it is and what it isn't.
It's a favourite soapbox of mine.
Over the years, I've been asked many times to "create a brand."
As soon as I begin to ask questions about their customer service, internal culture, market position, etc., I am often met with that deer-in-the-headlights look.
They aren't really asking for help with their brand. What they are saying is: "Create a logo for us."
Your logo, motto or slogan, the colours, fonts and images that you use represent your brand -- or what you think your brand is or want it to be.
Brand itself is quite different.
To define your brand, ask yourself some questions.
How would you describe your business's culture? What behaviour do you recognize and reward among your employees? How do you think your customers would describe their experiences with you? How responsive are you to requests for service after the sale? Do you give back to your community? Wha…
Whether you have the formal title of manager or not, you will give and receive lots of feedback during your career. If you're like a lot of people, you have a difficult time doing either. Certainly, receiving feedback often stimulates our fight-or-flight impulse.
Does it have to be this way? Is criticism really a threat to our survival?
Of course not! That would be silly.
Our brains are, however, wired to see criticism as a potential threat and it is this underlaying fear that makes receiving feedback so difficult to take.
Feedback is also very hard to give. No one wants to be the difficult boss or cranky colleague. (Unless you already are, in which case, you are likely oblivious and that's a whole other post!)
Here's how to do it effectively.
When giving feedback:
Be timely. There is no point in offering constructive criticism when it's too late for anything to be done about it. Be clear. Don't use waffly terms that leave your colleagues scratching their heads, wo…