Why is there so much talk today about different kinds of brands? Some experts would have us believe that every company must have at least three brands: a company brand, an employer brand and an employee brand.
This does nothing but muddy the waters and dilute the true purpose and value of your company’s brand.
Why do I believe that?
To review, a brand is a set of associations linked to a company— and its products and services—in the minds of customers and other stakeholders (such as employees) by its name, logo and other branding elements that provide a compelling promise of value. And strong brands are built through a well-conceived and executed brand strategy that creates, delivers and communicates the value desired by customers.
People strategy is an important part of a company’s brand strategy. It clarifies how employees are expected to shape customers’ perceptions of value. It also identifies and cultivates the necessary H.R. business practices for hiring, training, rewarding and promoting the right kinds of employees for the company and brand. Those employees that will make the greatest impact on customers and find real job satisfaction in so doing.
Talking about the need for an employer brand and an employee brand confuses the issue. An employer brand isn’t required to establish the character or reputation of the company as a place to work. An employee brand isn’t needed to influence the actions of employees in creating, delivering and communicating value to customers.
What an organization needs is to focus on building one valued and renowned brand through a single-minded brand strategy that helps identify and cultivate the company-wide business practices integral to the brand’s success in the marketplace. This is the same brand that will build a reputation as a place to work and influence the actions of employees in the right brand-aligned manner.
To build a strong brand and business a company should have only one brand.