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Internal Branding: What to Do When Those Who Work With You Don’t Know What You Do

About five years ago, I was having a conversation with a colleague at a Fortune 100 company. Her team had a major problem. Even though she worked for the #1 company in their industry on the planet, had amazing resources and top-talent, many people within her own organization were unsure what her department actually did. Even though they had amazing products, services, and resources available company-wide, the vast majority of the staff were never utilizing them.

Sure, like everyone else, her team worked hard and were always busy. However, they began to recognize that many people never even knew the full gamut of services that they provided. Services that could help employees both personally and professionally.

Her team decided that if they were going to work in this department (within a world-class organization) then they needed to strategically position themselves as a world-class department. They hired a Personal Branding Agency to strategically position their department within their OWN organization.

They worked closely with the agency to clarify who they were, what they did and the impact their department had on the organization as a whole. They set a department vision and then made sure that everyone on the team was in alignment with their mission. They got clear on their services within the organization and how they wanted company employees to buy into that vision. Once they cultivated their departmental brand, they designed a campaign to introduce their new department across the organization.

Huge success.

It’s important to note that too often, we work from the space of assumption. We assume that since you hear someone’s title, you know what they do. Ask yourself:

1. Does every department within your organization operate from a clear and focused vision?

2. Do your departments seamlessly interact with one another?

3. Could everyone within your organization articulate what each department does?

4. Are any resources within your organization being overlooked because people simply don’t know they exist or don’t know how they would benefit from them?

If you can see your organization in the story above, maybe it is time for you to consider strategically positioning your departments within your organization. I’m sure you will agree that your external results are a direct reflection of your internal workings and plan.

Jennifer Ransaw Smith is the Founder of Brand id | Strategic Partners, a full-service Personal Branding + Elevation Agency that specializes in helping organizations elevate the visibility, credibility, influence and impact of their senior executives and SME’s. Their mission is to help your company become an industry leader by leveraging your top talent. To discover how a strategic executive branding and thought leadership plan could catapult your organization’s visibility within the marketplace, register here for a complimentary, Executive Brand Audit.