Tag Archives: Management

Remember the Little Things with Brand Development

3 Apr


Silver Miniature Poodle By Belinda (Flickr) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Silver Miniature Poodle By Belinda (Flickr) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Did you know brand development is more than just a logo and a tagline? It is a persona you create for your business and it is extremely important to your success. And as the world changes and your business adapts to those changes then so should your brand. Let us take a moment to explain what should be considered in brand development.

Where do you start? How do you define yourself?  It is vital to start with market research. There is a timeless question asked in a focus group sessions. If I were a (fill in the blank), what kind of (fill in the blank) would I be? In this case, ask yourself, if I were a dog what kind of dog would I be? A Rottweiler who fights to get business, a Poodle who is beautiful and attracts business through its visual appeal, or a Beagle who is fun-loving and friendly and pulls in customers just because they are nice.

Once you have your persona defined then it has to be reflected in everything that you do. And we mean everything.

More obvious examples of brand development:

  • Logo
  • Letterhead
  • Website
  • Advertisements
  • Signs
  • Print Marketing Materials
  • Phone App
  • Social Media Pages
  • Trade Show Booth

Less obvious examples of brand development:

  • How your phones are answered
  • On hold message or music
  • How your staff speaks with the customers
  • Email signature
  • Physical space from where you do business

And one more that really isn’t considered very often is how your delivery drivers, if you have them, drive and treat others when they are out on the road. Stay alert; and if the world creates new ways to market or gain business exposure, then your brand development should adapt to those changes.

So don’t forget the little things with brand development; remember everything you do and say should be a reflection of the Rottweiler, Poodle, or Beagle that your business has become.

If you have questions or want some assistance with your company’s persona the please contact us.


The Core Concepts of Effective Reputation Management

10 Jan

Night and the moon“Character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow.  The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.” Abraham Lincoln.

Do you have the good reputation that you deserve? Bad publicity has always been a challenge, even to the good guys. In these days of social media that can instantly harm you there is a need for a sophisticated response strategy. Make sure people are aware of your character, and not looking at someone else’s shadow.

Reputation management can have many forms, and can require several different roles. In a large organization, the role would be filled by a full-time strategic communication advisor; but even then, the key employee may need consultation depending on the situation.

Perhaps the defining characteristic of effective reputation management is good judgment. Maintaining a good reputation involves planning your organizational structure so that you have a smooth flow of information as well as confronting specific issues as they appear in the business environment and in the media.

Any confusion caused by incorrect reporting must be addressed with authority in a timely manner.  Any roadblocks to communication within your organization must be located and eliminated.

Whether it is for a hospital board, an African nation, the U.S. Department of Defense, a corporate public relations department, or a small business operating a marketing strategy, a reputation management strategist coordinates clarifying your position. This important advisor will also assist in the formation and adjustment of policy.   

The higher your authority, and the broader the scope of your endeavors, the more important it is that you are in position to be able to manage the public perception of your efforts. An effective reputation management strategy is much more than “spin.” The creation and implementation of good policy needs dedicated attention and support in the unpredictable climate of popular opinion.

The Possible Roles involved in reputation advisement:

  • As an educator, the advisor communicates with employees and associates to make them better conduits for a policy that has been decided upon.  In order to avoid inconsistency of services or product, all people involved in implementing your service should be schooled in the philosophy of your business or social mission. This involves coordination with human resources and training of department heads as well as direct presentation to large groups.

  • As a publicist, the advisor has editing, writing and speaking skills to distribute information through appropriate networks, whether through existing corporate newsletters and email systems, or media outlets. The publicist is familiar with social media and monitors interaction on strategic sites. The publicist can produce content, as well as inform others on proper responses to online forums.  The publicist has a close relationship with any formal spokesperson or media relations department for a large organization, acting as a liaison between management, media, and policy formation.

  • As an analyst, the advisor suggests what information should be given to a particular group, be it employees, associates, or volunteers. The analyst assists in the timing and proper media for press releases. The analyst provides support and assembles research opportunities when adjustment of policy is necessary.

  • As a researcher, the advisor is aware of trends in the social fabric regarding your endeavors. The researcher is aware of meaningful published work, and, if necessary, attends relevant summits and discussions by experts in the field. The researcher evaluates new ideas and innovations, making recommendations to you for discussion and review of policy.

  • As a coordinator, the advisor makes certain that internal and external policy is consistent with your goals, and develops measuring techniques to monitor progress in accurately portraying your efforts to the public. The coordinator will be aware of budget compliance, and will be able to provide recommendations for necessary adjustments, whether in policy or implementation of existing policy.  

Give us a call, and clarify your position.

 Contact us

Four Ways to Demonstrate Thought Leadership

28 May

Red Illuminating LightbulbEntrepreneurs can be divided into leaders and followers.  Followers might be sufficiently competent and reliable, but leaders are the ones who command the most attention and respect.  They set trends, make breakthroughs, and consistently demonstrate authority and creativity in a given field.

To promote your business and set yourself apart from the pack, you’ll need to exercise thought leadership, proving to others that you can address the pressing problems in your field, offer a unique and compelling perspective, and yield a profit from your foresight and authority.  These days, many people on the Internet and other media call themselves thought leaders; to distinguish yourself from them, you’ll have to go beyond talking about how you’re a thought leader and actually give proof of it.

What are four ways to demonstrate thought leadership?

1) Engage In a Public Dialogue about the Burning Questions in Your Field

Publish articles, both in trade journals and in magazines geared towards the public, where you make predictions about where your field is headed and the issues that need to be addressed.  Participate in conferences where you present ideas and receive feedback from others.  Write about some of your wilder or bold plans in blog posts to attract interest and a steady following, along with some healthy debate.  Your communications must be rich in substance and crafted in such a way to attract and hold attention.  With time, you’ll build a body of work that proves to others you’re a thought leader in your field.

2) Promote Your Accomplishments

Don’t be modest about your achievements and credentials.  You can promote your accomplishments effectively without coming across as a braggart.  Send out press releases announcing creative or compelling information about your company, such as a new product or service, or a new way of doing business.  Secure interviews with journalists and bloggers who can write a profile on you and help you broadcast your message and your achievements to date.

3) Listen and Learn

A good leader pays attention to other people whether they’re business colleagues, competitors, or customers.  What’s important to them? What are they saying? Read and think about what’s going on in your field, and look beyond it as well; key innovations can arise when people synthesize information from multiple fields.  Don’t automatically dismiss or attempt to silence those who disagree with your views.  You can have your own firm opinions while still maintaining an open-minded attitude. People will respect you for this.

4) Get Endorsements

Your business will receive a significant boost if you get the endorsement of well-known figures in your field.  These are people who already have a strong reputation, have broken new ground, and others look up to them.  If they mentor you, collaborate with you, or otherwise endorse or spotlight your work, your own reputation as a thought leader will strengthen significantly.

Demonstrating thought leadership requires meaningful public engagement, compelling communication, and active networking.  Contact us to discuss effective ways to promote yourself as a thought leader and strengthen your reputation.


What’s My Organizational Culture?

19 May

organizational cultureIf you want your company to be successful, you must have a good understanding of your organizational culture. Culture is the common values, beliefs and most importantly the behaviors within your company. Culture is how your employees interact with one another, what they feel is important at work, or how effective your employees are at getting tasks completed. Generally, there are four categories of culture: networked, mercenary, fragmented, and communal. Different forms of organizational culture are for different environments and different types of companies. Understanding which culture best defines your organization will give insight into if your company is being the most effective it can be. A company’s culture can be buried, hidden and hard to examine but here are the definitions of each type of culture.

 1)      The networked culture values friendships, relationships and helping your coworkers when they need it. In this type of environment, people like and care about each other, they display empathy and are informal with one another. Conversations around the water cooler and break rooms are common and meetings typically start with asking how everyone is doing. Job responsibilities can get a bit blurry in this type of environment because everyone helps everyone, team meetings and decisions are important and no one likes to say no to their friend. Leaders thrive on being liked and appreciated and so often times the downside to a networking culture can be lack of productivity or lack of accountability.

 2)      The Mercenary culture is the opposite of a networked culture. In this type of environment, individuals are focused, determined and highly motivated to complete job tasks. A common driver within this environment is increasing revenue. These organizations expect more than 40-hour weeks, making things happen no matter what, hitting goals and work is about work. Often individuals who thrive within this environment are those who see networking as a way to obtain information, advice, or insight but not as a friendship. A highly positive aspect of this type of environment is the types of goals that are set. For example, the manager might set the goal to increase new memberships by 30 percent by a certain date. Goals are defined, clearly outlined and expectations are set in the beginning.

3)      The Fragmented culture is both low on the networking scale and the mercenary scale. People aren’t typically friends with their co-workers but often don’t have a drive to increase the company’s bottom dollar either. They work at a company but for themselves. In some instances, this type of environment, employees feel like they have freedom, flexibility and fairness. Common beliefs within this type of culture are to make you valuable and judging on the quality of work. Often companies with this type of culture are law firms, reporters, or academics.

 4)      The Communal culture is the culture that is most appealing to most managers but is one of the most challenging cultures to maintain. It’s a networked and a mercenary culture combined. Employees are friends but also want to be driven and successful. In this type of environment, friendships are abundant and so is productivity. Often in start-up companies this type of culture is prevalent because they’re small and they hire their friends who they know will work hard. Employees love working for the company and love their coworkers but they also are passionate about increasing company earnings and making things happen. Communal leaders tend to be inspirational, visionary and have a lot of charisma.

 There are several different characteristics that are used to examine your culture including how the office spaces are set up, how people communicate with one another, how effectively time is used and how people express themselves at work. There are several different tests that we can use to help you identify what culture your company is working within. Once you identify what type of culture your organization is, you get a better understanding of how to market and communicate your product and your services. Contact us today to have a cultural analysis completed.

When Bad Things Happen to Good Businesses: Reputation Management

12 May

executive media trainingYou have developed your business so it delivers what people want when they want it. Not only have you established your product and services, you have also advertised and promoted your company effectively through traditional media like newspapers, radio, and television, as well the Internet. As a result your business is growing and prospering.

However, the unexpected happens. It can be a natural disaster such as a flash flood or having a defective product slip out the doors to the public. Or perhaps, an irate customer or group of customers threatening to sue your company.  Challenges to the health of your business can take a variety of forms. Nevertheless, you will need to be ready to deal with them.

When bad things happen, the media might be coming to you. They will come at a time that will not be convenient and will ask questions. This will be a time when all the good work you have done in creating and developing your business can be threatened.

It is at those times you need to be ready to deal effectively with both the media and the public. TwoGirlsConsulting can be a crucial asset for you during those times. From effective executive media training, to handling and advising on how best to deal with media and the public, 2GC can help you weather the storm intact. Reputation management during times of crisis is one of the many things we can do for you.

TwoGirlsConsulting is committed to helping you grow your business and make it successful, while helping you avoid the misfortunes a business can face. Contact 2GC for more information on how we can accomplish this for you.


Reputation Management and Habits of Successful Leaders

28 Feb

reputation management imageForbes magazine recently published an online article titled “The Most Successful Leaders 15 Things Automatically, Every Day.” Leaders know how important reputation management is, both personally and professionally, and they become experts at doing these 15 things every day to ensure success.


1.  Make others feel safe to speak up. Successful leaders are confident enough to give those around them a voice.
2.  Make decisions. Successful leaders don’t waste time and “make things happen.”
3.  Communicate expectations. Successful leaders communicate clearly and make sure all team members stay focused on the goal.
4.  Challenge people to think. Successful leaders keep people on their toes.
5.  Be accountable to others. Successful leaders are willing to take responsibility for themselves.
6.  Lead by example. Successful leaders do what they ask others to do.
7.  Measure and reward performance. Successful leaders don’t take team members for granted.
8.  Provide continuous feedback. Successful leaders pay attention to team members and help them grow.
9.  Properly allocate and deploy talent. Successful leaders put people where they will shine!
10.  Ask questions, seek counsel. Successful leaders are willing to admit they don’t know it all.
11.  Problem solve; avoid procrastination. Successful leaders get things done!
12.  Positive energy and attitude. Successful leaders eliminate negativity from the workplace.
Be a great teacher. Successful leaders are always learning and teaching.
Invest in relationships. Successful leaders reach beyond themselves for the greater good.
Genuinely enjoy responsibilities. Successful leaders love leading!

TwoGirlsConsulting is on your team as you manage your reputation and implement these leadership principles. We can help you become the leader you want to be, the leader your business needs you to be. Using solid communication strategies, we will develop community awareness and open new avenues for your business to expand. With a personable and experienced approach, TwoGirlsConsulting will help you achieve your dreams!

We are committed to listening to you and helping you achieve your goals! Contact us today and tell us your story!

How Well Do You Know Your Business?

26 Mar

The SWOT Analysis is an easy way to help clients identify their current weaknesses and help them map out a strategy to turn their current trials into future strengths. The most challenging part for an organization is being honest about where they stand in their marketplace. The best part is the simplicity.

Don’t over think it, be concise and set egos aside. It’s an invaluable tool and allows businesses a way to assess their operations in four straightforward steps.

SWOT Analysis


Is it time to evaluate your company? Send an email to Adrienne@2girlsconsulting.com.

The Importance of a Deadline

17 Feb

“I never miss a deadline.” One statement I have been proud to say throughout my career. Deadlines are important and must be taken seriously. It is a way to show you, the boss, co-workers/team, and client the task at hand is a priority and you respect every person’s time. There is an old saying I try to live by ‘Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.’  Don’t be the link in the chain that is broken due to the absence of time management.

Staying on top of your work is easy by following a few steps:

  • Be Honest with Yourself. Can you complete the work in the time allotted with your current schedule? If not, say so and ask to extend the deadline.
  • Do Not Delay. Nothing is worse than having to rush because you waited until the last minute to get started. Make an appointment with yourself to work on the project a little each day.
  • Maintain High Standards for Your Work. Meeting a deadline doesn’t mean much if the work presented is flawed. You were given the assignment for a reason. Keep consistency.
  • Let Others Help You Be Successful. Task out items that do not require your expertise. I learned a long time ago to do what I do well and pass along the rest. This will loosen up your workload and help minimize unnecessary stress.
  • Communication is Key. Stay connected with the team. Check in with people to give and get updates to make sure all are on the same page and on time. Not talking is self-sabotage.
  • Stay Organized with Constant Reminders. Write down each step on a desktop calendar, place post it notes in your work area, and add milestones to your Outlook, Gmail and mobile phone calendars.
  • Beat the Deadline. If your target date is two or three weeks or a month away, try to finish ahead of schedule. This will allow for time apart from the job to refresh your mind and make any needed changes.
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