- Who & Why?
Have you ever purchased something from a company and it was a really hollow experience? I’m not talking about poor customer service necessarily. I’m talking about the fact that you walk away and feel empty and exhausted. At the very least, you feel as if there was nothing memorable about your purchase. You have no recall value for the company and their product beyond the immediate purchase.
This happened to me recently when I bought a car. I left the dealership happy with my new car. However, I also felt very much like I didn’t really matter to the dealership. I was just another number they could check off because they were closer to their monthly quota. In fact, every time I drive by the dealership, I look away and wince- I’d like to leave behind and forget the entire experience. And car buying is not a novel concept to me.
Not good for business, right? What gives?
The dealership had no soul. By this I mean, there was no real emotional resonance with their clients. The dealership likely did not care about us as clients. The money came first.
On the other hand, contrast the dealership experience with that of a company like Zappos. When you order shoes from Zappos, you are part of their process and brand culture. Heck, you can even get on their website and read about their brand culture and values. It doesn’t read like our typical corporate “mission statement”. You can almost feel the sincerity and excitement. Now that’s soul.
So what does this mean for you? Consider:
If you work for a company, does your employer have soul? Does your employer:
• Have an established brand culture based on individual employee brand values? If not, then it is hard for you to feel part of something greater than yourself.
• Share what’s important with you? This is beyond “mission” and “vision”. I see this as a daily act- simple, and not always easy.
If you are in leadership at a company, does your company have soul? Do you and the leadership team:
• Really make sure each customer/client walks away with a sense of joy and high recall value for your business and product?
• Instill this sense of “soul” with each employee daily?
Was this helpful? If so, please share it with others. Email me and let me know your thoughts and experiences on this subject.
Just the other day I was on an airplane again. I fly all the time. On every flight I find myself caring too much about what the other passengers think of me. How do I do it? Well, it shows up in every aspect of my “being”- from what I eat and drink on the flight to what I read or write on the plane.
It’s just crazy, right? And don’t judge me- you know you do it, too. You just don’t want to admit it because you don’t want us to value you less.
Some times I think I spend more time thinking about this stuff than about myself and how I feel when I’m on the plane. And this is from someone who develops other peoples’ brands for a living. I’m fully self-aware and know the impact of us not setting our own self-worth and value.
Do you ever wonder why we all care so much about what others think about us?
It can’t be self-preservation. Frankly, all the energy I expend on making sure I look “good” to others on the plane is just exhausting. It does nothing to make me feel better to try so hard. If anything, it is “anti” self-preservation.
It also can’t be because I really care about what others think of me. I’m likely never going to see any of those people again once I step off the plane.
Yet, I fall for ego’s trick, too—even on airplanes with people I have never met and will never meet again.
So the real inquiry is why do we allow others to set our value for us? Why is it that we can’t have a high enough self-worth that it doesn’t really matter what others think of us?
Why do we allow others to set our self-worth and set our value?
The real reason is that we are so afraid to look deep inside because we may discover that we are loveable and great. If we look inside, we may find ourselves worthy of love- our own love and that of others. If we did, then what anyone else thinks of us would not matter- we would get to set our own value and worth. That’s very liberating, not to mention not so exhausting. That’s also an attractive brand.
What does this mean for you? Stop and consider:
- How often do you allow what others think of you to matter more than what you want to think of yourself? Be honest with yourself.
- Why do you do it?
- Where is one place in your life experience and activities that you could allow yourself to be “free” and set your own value/worth and brand?
- What if you just didn’t care what others thought of you- that includes your friends, family, colleagues and strangers? I guarantee you that you would be happier AND more productive. You would have a stronger sense of self, making you more attractive to others.
Was this helpful? If so, please share the blog and help others, too.
Got questions? Feel free to email me directly: katy (at) purispersonalbranding.com
My husband and I used to have this age-old argument regularly. Here’s how it went: there would be dishes in the sink. The fact that they were dirty and in the sink would bother me. So I would either: a) glare at my husband hoping he got the message and did the dishes or b) get upset because he wasn’t a mind reader and do the dishes myself.
This would of course lead to resentment on my end and upset on his end- he hadn’t done anything wrong, but had I? After all, if I wanted the dishes done at that very moment, then I should do it myself, right?
So for a while I chalked it up to anxiety. I thought I must have anxiety and insist on the dishes being done. I then realized I don’t have anxiety, so how could I have anxiety about the dishes? Finally, it dawned on me. I had “Good enough” syndrome, as I Iike to call it.
You see, in order for me to have felt like I was “good enough”, I had to do the dishes and all the other chores that I felt compelled to do. That’s what made me a workhorse. That’s what wore me out and left me unhappy.
Of course, it’s not all bad being a workhorse and wanting to excel. This trait allows me to run an entire company very well.
However, when I realized that I was doing too much in order to be “good enough”, I chose to see things differently. When I chose to see things differently, my world shifted.
I stopped setting the bar so high for myself. This reduced my stress. I realized I was “good enough” as I was. I didn’t have to do all the dishes or any other chore or task. My relationship with my husband improved, too. I now know that I’m “good enough” even if I want to sit on the couch all day long and do nothing.
When we allow ourselves to be “good enough”, we give ourselves permission to love ourselves as we are. We then love others as they are, too. This doesn’t mean setting the bar low. It means setting the bar at a realistic place to make room for us to be happy. As a result, our stress is lower. This allows for us to naturally excel without force or resistance. Resistance brings on brand dissonance. Brand dissonance leads to a low brand value for you.
What does this mean for you? Stop and think for yourself:
- Where do you set the bar too high for yourself?
- How does this incredibly high bar lead to stress in your life and a less-than optimal brand?
- What is one thing you can take action on to know that you are “good enough” and be happier and a better brand so others are attracted and engaged with you naturally?
I can’t tell you how often I used to think about fleeing the nest when I was a practicing lawyer. Especially towards the end of my career.
It’s not like I was suicidal (that’s a very serious topic that needs to get addressed immediately).
I just couldn’t do “it” anymore. I couldn’t draft one more document, I couldn’t listen to one more colleague complain or hear another superior of mine pretend to manage and lead us. It became maddening.
Towards the end, I had many days when I really had to drum up the motivation to not roll over and go back to bed. I knew I wasn’t officially depressed because I would lay in bed and dream of going to the gym all day, instead of to work –ahhh, how much more fun and productive that would be!!
Sound familiar? Maybe not to you. However, maybe your employees or colleagues are thinking so.
I can’t tell you how often we get calls from management letting us know that they fear employees will leave. While attrition is natural and necessary, if you start to see a pattern, you’ve got a problem. For example, is it mostly women that are leaving? Or is it mostly a particular department’s employees that are leaving?
No matter what the reason or where, one thing is for sure in my world: addressing attrition head-on is your only solution. How?
In my world, we do it by developing the brands for each individual employee- either in a group or one-on-one. Why?
As humans, we want to make a difference and drive the ball forward somehow in our lives. When we do, we roll up our sleeves and start contributing to the overall goal. This gives us energy and purpose to keep going. When we don’t know who we are or why we should show up at work, then the game is over. If I don’t think there is anything interesting about me, then why would I go to work each day?
Thinking back, that’s why I couldn’t get up each morning at the end of my legal career. I just didn’t know what purpose I served anymore as a lawyer. I was lost.
My solution is about facilitating the process so each employee has a brand: a) knows their values, b) how to bring their values to work, and c) how to sync up their values with their employer’s values. This is the start of the brand development process.
What does this mean for you? Stop and think for yourself:
- Why do you get up and go to work each day?
- What purpose do you serve at work?
- What are your values?
- Are your values synced up with that of your employer/company/business? If so, how? If not, why?
Just the other day I was forcing an issue with my husband. We were at a restaurant ordering lunch. Being a typical woman, I wanted him to “share” a burger and a salad with me instead of us both ordering a burger. It’s my attempt to be healthier and still eat what I love (a burger!). I kept suggesting it to my husband…. Over and over again. I wanted him to do what I wanted him to do. Free will was lost. So, he pushed back and we both got burgers.
Sound familiar? It should. Stuff like this happens so often.
What if I had just stopped and chosen to see the situation differently? Instead of “suggesting/forcing” my views on my husband, what if I had “allowed” the situation to be and allowed whatever was going to happen, to happen?
I guarantee you the end result would have been different.
Maybe we still would have ended up ordering burgers, but I wouldn’t have let myself down and expended so much negative energy pushing and shoving my will on my husband. I could have been happier in that moment.
Successful brands don’t force anything – on themselves or on others.
Anytime we force anything, we have active resistance around anything in our lives,. Then there is tension. Tension even shows up when we are “achieving” or “earning”.
Tension amps up our stress. Our stress amps up other peoples’ stress. Then people don’t want to be around us anymore, much less hire us, buy from us, promote us, date us. You name it. The game is over.
Instead, successful brands recognize that allowing life to happen sets everyone up for more success. Allowing life to happen, allows us to “be” with ease and grace. Ease and grace is the only way to let your brand shine and get us to stop, notice you and gravitate naturally to you.
What does this mean for you? Stop and consider:
- How often do you force your way and will in life? Next time, stop and have self-awareness: is it really working for you? Be honest with yourself.
- What if you stopped trying to “achieve” or “earn” and just “allowed”, instead?
- What would your life be like if you just “allowed” yourself and others to be? Where can you make subtle adjustments to allow more and force less?
Call or email me to discuss this strategy in your brand and life.