When it comes to brand training, it’s tempting to focus on small groups. For example, it might seem most advantageous to focus on the sales and marketing people who sell the brand, the employees who work in the executive office and represent the brand to the industry, or on new employees who aren’t as familiar with the brand. Taking the time and money to train internal, lower profile location, or longtime employees may not seem as important.
Brand Training is Essential
However, all employees need to receive brand training, no matter their position.
Providing brand training for customer-facing employees is a must, but that doesn’t mean that there’s no need to train internal employees. First of all, your employees need to know the expectations that come with your brand. If one of your brand pillars is “quality craftsmanship,” then employees who make your products need to know craftsmanship will be scrutinized. If your brand is known for being friendly and casual, your internal office employees should be aware so that they can help their work environment align with the brand.
Second of all, internal employees are customer-facing, too. Every person your employees interact with—a friend, a family member, a neighbor—is a potential customer. No, your employees probably won’t deliver rehearsed, brand-driven sales pitches to these potential customers. However, employees who “fall in love” with their brand will promote it a genuine, unscripted way, according to 5 Key Benefits of Internal Branding. The better employees know the brand, the more likely they are to love it. The more they love it, the more they will naturally praise it to others.
Lower Profile Location Employees
The trainingmag.com article Promoting a Global Workplace through Effective Training mentions how key consistency is: customers should get the same experience no matter the location. The employees at a corporate office of a fast food company may perfectly embody their brand slogan “Lunchtime is fun time.” However, if the food service employees at the company’s Albuquerque location act bored and listless, then the slogan is undermined and the brand seems insincere.
For all locations to be consistent with the brand experience, all locations need to receive vigorous brand training.
Training longtime employees on brand seems unnecessary. After all, they’ve been around forever, and many of them know the brand through and through. Many also have that strong emotional connection and will promote the brand without being asked.
However, longtime employees may be resistant to any changes that have been made to the brand in the years since they were hired. They may also resist moving forward with changes or new initiatives if they don’t see how those movements relate to the brand as they first knew it. Receiving training can help longtime employees to understand, accept and be excited about any forthcoming brand changes.
One Last Thought
If you’re still on the fence about providing brand training for every employee, remember that with the advent of social media, every employee has an impact on the brand whether they’re trained or not. The barrier between the personal and the professional is growing increasingly thinner. Anytime an employee lists your company as their employer on a social media profile, their online activities reflect on the company and the brand. If your employees receive extensive brand training, they’re more likely to conduct themselves in a way that will positively represent the company.
No matter their position, every employee impacts your company’s brand. Will that impact help or hurt? It all depends on you and the brand training that you provide.