Humans are social beings by nature, and our success as a species is largely due to our emotional intelligence. Our ability to connect with each other and manage relationships has given rise to every advancement in history, from the formation of languages to international trade and the rise of democracy. Without these systems of human relationships, modern civilization as we know it would not be possible.
But in today’s society, it seems that we have forgotten the vital role relationships play in the business world. The culture of capitalism places an extraordinary amount of pressure on us as individuals, and since the health of our economy is defined in terms of perpetual growth, companies are often forced to put profits before the well being of their employees and customers. All of this has led to a widespread feeling of alienation. The workforce is increasingly stressed out and under-appreciated, and consumers are losing trust in the companies that provide the products and services they rely on.
So what do we do?
We start by acknowledging that business is a system of relationships between human beings — real people with unique personalities, talents and motivations. Employees seeking financial security and a sense of fulfillment. Customers seeking pleasure, status, and empowerment. People exchanging their time and effort for money, and their money for the satisfaction of their needs and desires.
We exist in a marketplace of goods and services provided by people for people, but somewhere along the line, business was dehumanized and the focus shifted from building trust through service to cutting costs and increasing profit margins. And while this tactic may please shareholders with short term gains, it jeopardizes the company’s relationships with its employees and customers.
At GNOSIS, we believe that nurturing healthy relationships, both internally and externally, is the key to sustainable growth.
All relationships are built on trust, and trust is earned through consistent communication and reliable behavior. Just as every individual has a unique personality, with their own set of beliefs, values and attributes, every company also has its own personal identity. This is what we call a brand.
Contrary to common belief, a company’s brand is not just its logo, colors, and fonts. A brand is everything that contributes to the feeling you get when you think of a company. It’s the identity or personality of the business. And while it’s an abstract concept, it has very real implications, since it’s the mechanism through which employees and consumers engage in a relationship with the company.
Think of Starbucks. Now think of Apple, Burger King, Google, Nike and Amazon. You’ll find that you have varying emotional and rational responses as you consider them. Does one feel stronger or more relevant to you? Do you trust one and not the other? Do you consider one bad and another good? Why?
Large companies are well aware of how important it is to manage these perceptions because they know that gut reactions make the difference between someone buying or recommending their product or service.
Warren Buffet once said, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”
Every company has an opportunity to leverage the power of their brand to inspire loyalty. That’s why it’s critical to invest in ongoing brand awareness, education and maintenance. But managing brands with dozens, hundreds or thousands of employees and even more customers may seem like an impossible task. This is where we come in.
We’re a team of business consultants who help companies achieve sustainable growth by nurturing harmonious relationships and managing brand perception. With decades of combined experience in the communications, marketing, and design industries, we’ve synthesized a diverse set of skills and practices into a holistic offering that’s greater than the sum of its parts.
In the ideal scenario, we work with your business from day one to ensure clarity from concept to market. We would review your intentions, resources and long term goals, refine them and establish the major components of your business in the appropriate order. And since we handle everything from business strategy to the actual design and production of your brand identity, retail space, visual assets, communication points, collateral, packaging and marketing, we save our clients time and money by carrying out a cohesive vision from start to finish, avoiding the inevitable disparities that occur when you employ several teams that don’t work together and don’t fully understand each other’s craft.
But most of our clients are existing companies who want to get their business back on track. Sometimes we can have a good business that’s profitable, yet something doesn’t feel quite right. There might be an inner tension with the team, a dwindling sense of purpose, or a rift between the intention of our messaging and the way it is received.
In this case, we come in to audit the situation, reviewing all available assets, processes and marketing efforts to assess the health of the brand. We connect with upper management and employees to determine the proper alignment of purpose, then we present findings and outline recommendations to bring the spirit of the company back to its highest expression. Once these recommendations are reviewed with your management team, we set up a step-by-step action plan that empowers your company with the knowledge and tools to take constructive action. These solutions are custom tailored for your business, but they may include brand workshops that get everyone on the same page, communication refinements that adjust your messaging, updates of visual assets like logos, colors and fonts, purpose-driven marketing campaigns, general process adjustments and guidance on how to keep your team spirited and on point.
Our goal with every client is to achieve a complete alignment of purpose and expression, with the brand serving not only as the public face of the company, but also the shared language of its internal culture. Because when we come to a mutual understanding that business relationships are human relationships, and that we all have a responsibility to each other as human beings, we can transform a job into a passion, a company into a community, and a community into a movement.
If you’re ready to take your business to the next level, let’s get started.