Brand Bits Tuesday. Courageous chalk-talk for school communicators – SCN Encourager

You need to treat your school “branding” like you’re a Crime Scene Investigator

A speedy-kwik review.

yay-brand-bits-weekYesterday I highlighted how (because of our roles and situations) we’ve often got to be the dumbest and most unpopular people on our leadership teams.

I even bragged about how easily I can accomplish this.

I know it was wrong and I’m sorry.

But like Muhammad Ali once said, it’s not really bragging if you can back it up.

But I have to stop.

Especially today…. since today’s Brand Bit has to do with higher level science.

And we know how everyone loves science!

So here’s what I’d like for you to consider today.

Many experts will define “your brand” or “your school’s brand” as whatever is said by people about it when you are not in the room.

I happen to agree with this.

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-3-59-51-pmWhile I’d agree that WE can exert great intentionality and control over our REPUTATION (by earning trust, etc,) our BRAND is largely controlled and directed by our community and others outside of our system.

A REPUTATION is a “you/me/us” kind of thing.

A BRAND is a “they/them” kind of thing.

In other words, it’s our day-to-day, week-to-week, and year-after-year behaviors which create the stories people will tell about us to their family and friends.

We can storytell all we want.

That’s not the stuff that gets shared and spread.

It’s our organizational habits, approaches, and attitudes that fuel the word-of-mouth engine.

The formula is simple:

(What we do + How much we care) TIMES (What people experience & share) = OUR BRAND

Experts label our organizational habits, approaches, and attitudes as our “organizational culture.”

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-3-57-39-pmAnd unfortunately, they say an organizational culture is very much like DNA.

It’s not something easily changed.
(No matter how dumb or unpopular we’re willing to be.)

Every organization has its own distinct DNA.

And the experts also say you can only alter your DNA by first studying and understanding what your current DNA actually is and clearly determining what you prefer it to be.

So this is where the hard SCIENCE comes in; our coming to grips with our own organizational DNA.

We’ve got to employ:
Sensitive Discussion.
Calculated Analysis.
and Exploration & Discovery.

I’ll share what the experts recommend in the Brand Bits on Wednesday.

I can’t say I’m happy about all of the tough love the experts recommend.

And I can’t even say I’ve actually had any CSI field work in this domain before.

It’s not like I’ve ever gone home and asked Cindy to assess my DNA and offer suggestions for changing it!

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