We’re fortunate to be working in a time of low unemployment. The challenge of this encouraging news is that employee retention and acquisition is on the minds of many nonprofits. We want to find – and keep – great employees.
Have you thought about the role brand plays in this challenge? Smart nonprofits do.
Brand is a powerful acquisition tool. Many of our clients include “potential employees” among their most important stakeholders when developing their brand strategy. When a potential new hire notices you and your colleagues consistently articulating what you stand for and why it matters, she can be confident she’s joining an organization with a clearly defined culture.
If you’re not sure what your brand strategy is, talk about your values as a way to define your culture. What are the cultural touchstones of your organization?
My dental practice has values, and I see them come to life every visit. They are listed everywhere in the office. Believe it or not, one of their values is “Joy.” If you’re interviewing at several dental practices, wouldn’t you want to work in the office that articulates and demonstrates its desire for joy?
Living your brand daily leads to employee retention – keeping great employees. My dentist’s office is a happy place – it’s clear people love working there. Turnover is low.
One of Mission Minded’s client’s uses her brand as an empowerment and retention tool:
“At our new employee training, we empower every single person to ensure our brand value proposition becomes the client’s experience with our organization. They are encouraged to know what our value proposition is, and how to bring it to life in their jobs.”
This clear-thinking, brave CEO is committed to her healthcare organization’s refreshed brand. After years of being seen as a “clinic of last resort,” she was determined to infuse the forward-thinking, energized organization’s brand directly into every single employee’s job, every day. And research shows that employees who feel empowered and engaged “are more productive, content and more likely to be loyal to an organization.”
When you hold brand as a yardstick or a rallying cry, you do two things: you remind your employees of the unique assets of your organization, and you engage them in making the brand come to life in their own work. That’s empowering. For your brand and your employees.
At Mission Minded, we often think about how to “amplify the good” in our own employees: is there something great they love that we can help them do more of, to the benefit the company? A brand becomes a lens through which to consider employee development.
Ultimately, when you engage in brand work, you embark on a journey of uncovering and amplifying your organization’s best assets: what you do really well and why that matters.
Like a second honeymoon, the journey lets staff fall in love with your organization all over again. And that’s the best employee retention tool there is.
Need help brainstorming other ways to immerse your team into your brand? We’ve got lots of great resources to help you think through how your employees can be inspired by and bring your brand to life in their everyday work.
*Editor’s note: This post was originally published in August 2017 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.