Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Keep the Message Simple and Consistent

There are a lot of things that make a business successful, but one of the things that you can see among most successful companies is that they all run a clear and consistent message. It doesn't mean that you can't change what you do or gradually change your image over time, but it means that you need to make sure that your employees know the message--and trust it.

The issue is that the business world is driven by the "what have you done for me lately" mentality and when you have a board and shareholders to answer to, you need to have a clear and consistent answer to that question. The issue is that everytime you change your message, and change a lever, you confuse and frustrate your employee-base. Like on the TV show, The Office, when the fictional paper company, Dunder Mifflin, started selling printersor when the real-life company, Netflix, decided they were going to split into two companies--until they weren't. Companies tell employees to focus on the top line but then if the bottom line suffers, they tell employees to start focusing on that.

The goal is not to stay stagnant--it's to stay consistent in your message and your being. And if you do decide to change, make sure everyone is bought in and on board. Because if your employees are confused, then how are you and those employees supposed to convince your customers that you are a worthwhile company to do business with. Stay clear and stay consistent.

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