What really is a brand?
The most successful leaders and businesses look inward to understand their purpose, values and vision. By doing so, they clarify direction, guide decision making, and find that these things become self-fulfilling. Collectively, a clear purpose, defined values and a vision statement define what a brand actually represents. It’s what is promised to employees, customers and others. It’s what differentiates a company from others. It’s what is done collectively that individuals cannot do alone. And, it should guide a company’s behavior, communications, and appearance.
The Real Property Management brand has taken that inward look. We enlisted the aid of a branding consultant from San Francisco, involved our twelve member Advisory Council that represents all our franchisees, and had active participation from our company owners and the senior management team. Our goal for the process was to establish complete clarity about who we are, what we hope to accomplish as an organization, and guide how we will accomplish our purpose and vision. These are shown in the below image.
Our core purpose defines our motivation for being an organization that transcends making money. It defines why we exist. It’s what we hope to accomplish collectively that we could not do alone. It’s our idealistic motivation for being. It should be applicable to everyone involved in our business: franchise owners, employees, corporate staff, property owners, tenants, the cities and towns in which we operate, and outsiders with whom we do business. Our core purpose will guide and inspire us. This defines our endless pursuit that does not change over time.
The values were uncovered by the consultant. These were not wished into being. We believe they are real, because we collectively try to live by them whether convenient or not. The values listed were repeated time and again by various participants in this branding process. The consultant believes they are inherent in our nature as a company.
Vision is more pragmatic. This is our tangible goal for the business. It should be aspirational, evoke an emotional connection with employees, motivate action, and be a source of pride. Vision can and should change over time as the vision is realized. Being big and bold, there should only be a 50/50 chance we will achieve it. We believe our statement meets these criteria.
As we develop our plans for the future, we are using our brand statements to guide decision making. Members of our organization are committed to living by these. By doing so we hope to achieve great things that benefit each and every member of our organization, those with whom we do business, and the communities we serve.