Many years ago I was enamoured by the messages of a famous sales guru. I bought his tapes, distributed them to the sales team at the company where I was working and saw him live when he toured Australia.
All my dreams came true. Until they didn’t.
I met him in person after the show only to discover that many of the messages and values he espoused were not delivered upon in person. He did not make eye contact. He was flippant and dismissive in his responses. Not just to me, but to the group standing with me. This was an incredibly disappointing experience and left me noticing this behaviour in others for years to come.
I often coach people who share stories of great presenters, orators or sales people who shine in front of an audience yet behind the scenes, their behaviours and deliverables leave a lot to be desired.
When the external self is not congruent with the internal self the outcome is damaging.
Damaging for the employees, the presenter and ultimately the company they represent.
I can happily report there are so many more cases where the opposite is true. You meet great leaders and managers who present well and their behaviours match their messages.
They are congruent.
This same concept can and must be applied to companies.
David Mattin, Global Head of Trends and Insights at Trendwatching wrote a fabulous article titled “How internal culture is your brand.”
He brilliantly uses the following analogy “a business used to be a black box. Now, it’s a glass box.
Back when your business was a black box, the brand was whatever you painted on the outside of the box. You had control over that. People came and looked at what you’d painted, and either they liked it or they didn’t.
Now, thanks to the radical transparency made possible by a connected world, your business is a glass box. People can see all the way inside. And that means that now the brand is everything they see. Every person. Every process. Every value. Everything that happens, ever”
Remember, people react to companies like they do to people. When the internal and external behaviours don’t match, things unravel.
Your Small Act that is sure to have a Major Impact is to “Demand Congruency” of yourself, your employees and your internal cultural activities, leaving your external brand to be experienced at a much more authentic level.