Topsail Group, LLC

Case Histories: Internal Branding

Case: 1 2 3 4
  • “Creating a value proposition and a brand for the Company”

    Situation

    The USA Division of a French company undergoing many changes in leadership, operations, and people due primarily to the recent merger of two separately named companies and the shared services division into one common organization. A recent company-wide Employee Engagement Study and follow-up focus groups with employees indicated the following areas as weaknesses that needed to be improved upon: lack of alignment and goals, lack of communication, process improvement, lack of employee recognition, need more learning, training and development, and the lack of accountability. In order to help make these improvements and change the corporate culture throughout the company, the CEO decided a new value proposition was required.

    Solution

    Topsail Group created a customized Internal Branding Program to address and help solve the challenges facing this newly reorganized company. It helped to integrate and align employee behavior with the company’s new direction. This included individual interviews, pre-workshop assignments, workshops with the Executive Team and a cross section of employees. Topsail was able to facilitate key answers to “Who we are? What do we stand for? Where are we going?” This led to: 1) the creation of a New Value Proposition along with new, supportive key employee behaviors that were incorporated into job descriptions, performance reviews, and MBOs 2) a new Rallying Cry, 3) a variety of Kick-off Activities, including a company-wide video of the CEO and VP/HR launching the Program, 4) Value Proposition Handbook distributed to each employee, 5) Bi-monthly Internal Branding Newsletter with articles dedicated to the Program, 6) Environmental Branding through the offices including kiosks representing key program elements, 7) the selection and training of Brand Ambassadors to continue employee engagement, training, and development with quarterly workshops for all employees.

    Results

    Employees were informed, motivated, trained, and given the tools in order to buy-in and understand what was expected of them. The Internal Branding Program helped to build teams of dedicated, aligned, and engaged employees to help improve overall company and employee performance. A company-wide Employee Engagement Survey was conducted during 2010 to help evaluate the positive role of Topsail Group’s Internal Branding Program. The results were impressive: (Pre) 2008 Employee Engagement Survey Score = 45%; (Post) 2010 Employee Engagement Survey Score = 61% --- an increase of +36%. The company was very pleased with the results.

  • “The advertising came first; but then employees needed to live the Company Brand”

    Situation

    An asset management division of a global bank asked Topsail Group to help them to re-engage with their employees. The division had recently completed considerable work in determining a new division brand strategy and creating a new advertising campaign. The overall external branding message was to reinforce the fact that the company was a trusted financial resource offering high-quality service and solutions to its customers. Although the brand was re-launched externally to the marketplace, they ignored work that had to be done internally with their employees; to help them understand, buy-in, execute, and enhance the value proposition of the brand.

    Solution

    Topsail Group created an integrated and customized Internal Branding Program to address this issue. Following on the success of their external positioning and messages, Topsail used this as the basis of its internal strategic initiatives as it sought to educate, integrate, and align employee behavior with the company’s new direction. This included individual interviews, pre-workshop assignments, discovery and training workshops with the management team and a cross section of employees. Three key expected employee behaviors were developed: to be technically sound, accurate, and precise in everything done; to be committed and driven to proactively achieve goals by over-delivering and exceeding expectations; and, to be smart, cutting-edge industry thought leaders by working together to create innovative products and services. This was fine-tuned for each department and incorporated into job descriptions, performance reviews, and MBOs. The creation of a Rallying Cry, Value Proposition Handbook, and Internal Branding Newsletter were key elements of the Internal Branding Program.

    Results

    The Internal Branding Program directive was to help build teams of dedicated, aligned, and engaged employees to help improve overall company and employee performance. Topsail Group helped lead and provided the tools so that employees were able to become informed, motivated, and trained in order to buy-in and understand what was expected of them.

  • “There was confusion because no one understood the essence of the Company”

    Situation

    This company had been using an identity internally that did not clearly reflect the essence of the organization. Furthermore it was difficult to understand.  Topsail Group recommended that the Internal Branding be revitalized.

    Solution

    Topsail Group created a customized Internal Branding Program to address and help solve the challenges facing the company. Individual interviews probing the real meaning of the existing positioning precipitated the insight that uncovered the true essence of the company at this point in time. The adjustment in thinking restarted the entire process. Topsail helped create a new company Mission Statement thereby establishing a strategic foundation and a redirected new positioning. This now was put into the Topsail Group Internal Branding Process including the three separate phases: Determining Direction, Choosing a Path and Taking Action. Deliverables included: supportive key employee behaviors incorporated into job descriptions, performance reviews, and MBO’s; a new Company Rallying Cry; kick-off  activities, including its launch at the company’s annual meeting; an Internal Branding Handbook; a newly created bi-monthly Internal Branding newsletter; a new look for Environmental Branding including mission statements in all offices; new employee kit, the selection and training of Brand Champions to continue employee engagement, training, and development with follow-up workshops for all employees.  

    Results

    The Internal Branding Program helped to build teams of dedicated, aligned, and engaged employees. Everyone in the company now understood the corporate internal brand and they were able to internalize it and apply it to their own needs. The CEO has regularly observed improvement in communication, accomplishment of key priorities by his Executive Management Team as well as rank and file employees working more as a team.

  • “For a Rapidly Growing Company: Who are We? Where are We Going? What Should We Focus on?”

    Situation

    A rapidly growing and expanding global research firm has been signing-up new clients, gaining significant business from existing clients, and hiring new employees to keep up with the demand. However, the senior management team took a “time-out” to help clarify and clearly articulate who they are, what specific value does the company offer to clients, where should they be going, where should they place their focus, and what products and services should they offer going forward. In other words, the company needed to go back and position and brand itself to both clients and employees alike.

    Solution

    Topsail Group was asked to help the senior management team find the answers to these important questions --- answers that would help define and drive the next growth phase for the company. Topsail gathered the senior management team, along with twenty-five other employees representing the key functions of the company, to several workshops to explore, ideate, and together answer these questions. Pre-workshop assignments were given out prior to the sessions, including the dissemination of actual company client engagements and histories in order to focus all workshop activities “to reality, not theory or supposition.” The workshops were highly interactive with many breakout teams to wrestle with a variety of approaches and solutions. Each team then presented their points-of-view, findings, and recommendations to the entire group. Topsail led a lively discussion on each topic until there was a validation and consensus on each of the major topics that were explored and dissected.

    Results

    Based on these workshops, the company was able to define itself and created a new Company Mission Statement, Strategy Statement, and Pledge Statement (employees to one another), delineated company values, and developed a new mantra for all company-wide activities in order to achieve “Total Client Satisfaction.”  This Internal Branding initiative set the stage for all activities relating to Branding.

View Case Histories in: