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— Summary —

In this episode, we are going to talk about defining your business persona and creating a business identity. It is how your customers, employees, team and the people around you identify with your company and brand. We need to be really particular about creating an identity for our business.

If we do not get it right, we have no direction as an organization which leads to hiring people that don’t fit our identity needs. Ultimately you are not going to be able to build loyalty in your business. But if you do it right, you are going to create a group of people that are on a mission, they are going to be totally dedicated for your cause and outcome. All these result in the creation of a valued brand. So, what you need to know is that your culture is your aquarium and you need to keep it cleansed. Your tactics are driven by values that you set in the organization and the results are the byproduct of the identity that you create.

Business Persona Cycle

  • Values: The very first things that you want to define are the values of your organization. It is how you make decisions. If you are consistent with the values, it will lead to a specific culture.
  • Culture: When culture is done right, your team and employees will be there to follow your cause and not just to get their pay checks. You need to have a culture that serves something far greater.
  • Dialogue: This is the talk and it could be conversations about anything. Interactions between employees, team members, management and the team are all dialogues which build what we call a movement.
  • Tactics: The dialogue and movement determine the tactics that we are going to take. They are the specific actions that you put in place so that they result in certain desirable outcomes.
  • Systems/Processes: When we systematize the thinking, culture, dialogue and tactics, we have something known as a process. These systems or processes drive the results of your organization or business.
  • Results: They are what we want; our ultimate goal. When you get the results that you desire, don’t stop there as the cycle continues and you have to go back to your values. These are the keys to building your business persona.

— Begin Transcript —

Hey there, Mel Abraham here, the author of the #1 best-selling book, The Entrepreneur’s Solution and the founder of Thoughtpreneur Academy where we teach you how to capture, package and monetize what you know, the ideas in your head, the wisdom and experience and expertise that you have so you can have greater impact, greater income and greater freedom. Welcome to this episode of The Entrepreneur’s Solution show.

In the last episode, we talked a bit about your personal identity and how that is important, how that impacts the people around you, how it impacts the results that you’re getting and taught you the personal identity cycle. In this episode, we’re going to take that similar concept and talk about business. Defining your business persona, how is it that you create a business identity and yes a business does have an identity, a business identity needs to be created in a specific way.

In fact, someone people might call it a brand but the question is how do your customers, how do the people around you, your team, your employees identify with your company and your brand? So, we’re going to jump into this in a minute, but you know what? There’s an action guide that goes along with this. If you want to download the action guide, then just simply go to MelAbraham.com/session079 and you will be able to download the action guide. And if you’re not at your computer, maybe you’re out running, you’re doing some errands, you’re listening to me on the podcast then do me a favor? Just text me. Text MYLEGACY one-word to 38470 and I will send you the download link, you can get it when you get back to your computer so you have all the tools and templates and worksheets to make that happen.

So, let’s jump into this whole thing of the business persona and why identity in a business is so important and this is kind of an interesting thing for a left-brain thinker like me, an accountant to talk about because a lot of times, we get driven by results and I’m looking at financial statements, I’m looking at all the types of things that are driving the financial results but what’s really driving the financial results are the people and the people are driven by the identity and so what we need to do is really be specific in particular about creating an identity.

And so, here’s the thing. If we don’t get this right, this is the challenge that we’ve got. If we don’t get this right, ultimately, we’ve got no direction as an organization.

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As a business, what happens is that everyone is doing their own thing and you will find, you may have seen it in the past, in places that you’ve worked, places that you’ve even run where there wasn’t a clear identity and therefore people were doing their own thing and they weren’t consistent in the choices they were making that led to supporting the identity that you intended to create. So, what ultimately happens is we have no direction and people feel lost in the process.

Second, what ultimately happens is that you end up taking on people that don’t fit the organization.

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You hire the wrong people. Maybe, they’re skilled and talented which is great but they had the wrong value system and they don’t have the right identity to be in your organization to support the identity that you are trying to create in the organization. And when you do that, you create conflict within an organization.

So, you might hire the wrong people or you hire the right people but you got them in the wrong seats. That’s another thing. So, what ultimately happens is that you put them in a place where you think that they can serve but it doesn’t fit and when it doesn’t fit they’re in the wrong seats, it’s still going to create conflict and strife and problems in a business.

So, the other thing that will happen if we don’t get this right is that you’re not going to build loyalty.

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Brand loyalty comes from brand identity. In other words, people identify with the brand. They want to be part of the movement. They want to part of the position. They want to be part of what you stand for.

  • Whether it’s team players.
  • Whether it’s customers.
  • Whether it’s your vendors.

People want to be around it because they identify with your identity and if you’re not clear on that identity then people have nothing to identify with and that becomes a problem. So, you lose the loyalty of the people around you.

But here is the cool thing, when we get this right, ultimately, when we get this right, you’re going to create a group of people that are on a mission.

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They’re driven. In fact, I had a conversation today with someone who is working with this company for twenties. He’s made a ton of money and he doesn’t have to work anymore and the reason he works and the reason he goes to work each and every day and works long hours and travels a lot of miles for this business is because of the identity, the loyalty that he’s created. He feels he’s on a mission to serve, not only serve the customers that he is serving, to serve the mission of the organization but to serve the people that work for him and the people that work around him and a loyalty to that.

So when we get this identity right, you’re going to find that you’re going to end up with people on a mission. The other thing that happens when we get this right is that people are going to be totally dedicated. They’re going to be totally loyal and dedicated to the outcome.

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So, I will give you a for instance. Back in the day, there was a scare with peanuts at one point of time. One of my clients, Clifbar, they create health foods, breakfast bars, not breakfast bar but workout bars and those kinds of things and because of the scare in nuts and everything, they started to have a problem with their organization but all of the people in the organization, all the employees, all the team members, everyone were so much engaged in their mission, in their identity, they said, “Not to worry, we’re going to find alternatives, we’re going to make this work.”

And they actually took a dip but they came out the other side with a roar. It was an amazing thing to watch but it was because everyone rallied behind the mission of the company, the identity of the company and dedicated themselves to finding the new outcome.

Another thing that comes to mind on this is if you ever watched the movie Apollo 13; it’s an amazing movie. You got to see it if you haven’t seen it. I’ve watched it over and over again. But that one scene Ed Harris walks into the board room and says, “We got three people, we’ve got our astronauts stuck up there and we got to figure out a way to get them back to earth safely and alive.” And he dumps a box of stuff on the boardroom table and he says, “This is what they have up there to work with. Now let’s figure out how to get them home safely with this.”

And that’s what they did. They all worked together. They dedicated themselves to a specific outcome and when you got the right identity and you put the right people in the right seats, you’re going to end up with people that are going to dedicate themselves to getting that outcome.

Which ultimately creates a valued brand.

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Your valued brand is going to be built on the foundation of the identity that you create out in the marketplace and that identity that you create out in the marketplace is a result of the things that you create internally in the organization. So, when we do this, we ultimately end up with

  • People that are dedicated,
  • People on a mission, and
  • A valued brand.

So, we got to get it right. So, in order to get it right, what do you need to know and then, how does the business persona cycle work?

So, what do you need to know, let’s jump into that. Let’s figure out what are the key elements that you need to take away to know first and then, I will walk you through the persona cycle in a moment.

So, the first thing is this. The culture is your aquarium.

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It’s an interesting paradigm but think about this. If I’ve got an aquarium with some fish in it and that aquarium isn’t getting cleansed and it’s dirty and the water is dirty, the fish start to get sick. So, I take those fish out of the aquarium and I put them in clean water and they get healthy again and then, I take them back and I put them into the aquarium that’s still dirty and I didn’t clean it. What happens to them?

Exactly! They’re going to get sick again. See the aquarium is the culture. The culture in your organization is either going to allow people, customers, everyone to thrive or it’s going to suck the life out of them and that’s the challenge. Your culture is going to be driving a whole lot of things in it and business culture will drive profits, drive actions, drive dedication, drive loyalty, drive a lot of thing. So culture.

Then the tactics are driven by the values.

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In other words, the actions you take are going to be actions that are consistent with the values that you set in your organization. I know that when we talk about business, we want a mission statement, we want a vision statement. Well the vision and mission statement are built on the values that you want to create in the organization, that you want to support in the organization as you move forward in building a business which ultimately leads to this.

Is that the results are driven as a byproduct of the identity that you create.

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In other words, with organizations, I know this is going to be alien coming from an accountant that loves numbers and results is that if I take care of the culture, if I take care of the team, if I do the right things and I build a loyal following and I build a valued brand, the bottom line results will become the byproduct. If all I do is crack a whip, beat them with a stick and say, “Results, results, results” and that’s the only thing that matters is the numbers and the results and it’s the only thing I focus on and I don’t focus on culture, I don’t focus on values, I don’t focus on identity then yeah, I’m going to get some results but are they going to last? I’m going to suggest not.

I think that you’re going to lose people, you’re going to lose good people. They’re not going to be dedicated, they’re going to look for the first exit because they don’t feel appreciated, they don’t feel cared for and they don’t feel valued and they don’t feel fulfilled and when those things are lacking in an organization, you’ve got a bad culture, a poison culture and I think that ultimately, it will show in your results. So, let’s get the aquarium right. Let’s get all of that right. The results will then become the byproduct.

I’m not saying not to pay attention to the bottom line but I am saying that if the bottom line is the only thing you’re paying attention to, it’s a mistake. I know coming from an accountant, you’re going wait a second, that’s blasphemy. Well, no. It’s the way business should work because remember, I say that businesses they’re to create community, serve society and live your dreams. So, if we’re going to create community and serve society, it’s not just with the results of the bottom line.

So, if that’s what you need to know and you understand why, what’s the business persona cycle? It’s similar to the personal identity cycle but it’s focused on business. So, let’s jump into the business persona cycle. I’m going to jump to my iPad. We’re going to walk through this. I’m going to draw this out for you and let’s walk through this.

All right so, if we’re going to look at the Business Persona Cycle, let me just. So, I want to define the persona of the business. Once again, just like in the Personal Identity Cycle, the very first thing that I want to really start to define is what are the values of the organization and again, this is something that we can dive deep into. I don’t have the time in this episode to go into it but we need to define our values first to really start to understand

  • How we make choices
  • How we make decisions in the organization
  • How we’re going to make those decisions in an organization

Because we need to be consistent with those values. When we’re consistent with those values, what you’re going to see is that the consistent application of values will lead to a specific culture.

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Now, whether that culture is what you’re looking for in your business, I don’t know but if you do it right and the values are done properly, the culture that will result is exactly what it is you’re trying to create. So, the values will result in the culture which ultimately when we get the culture right, remember, that’s the aquarium that everyone is swimming in. So, we want that water that they’re swimming in to be rich and full of nutrients, something that they love coming to that, they feel fulfilled and that really starts to feed more than just their pocket. It’s almost like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Fact of the matter is, once the bills are paid, they’re going to want more than just the money in the process. From that culture, what that’s going to create is what I call a dialogue. This is the talk. This could be the water cooler talk, it could be the talk between the management team, it could be interactions between them, it could be the dialogue that ultimately results in a movement. But it is through that the values and that culture that when we build on that and then create that dialogue, the conversations that we have internally in the organization, that ultimately we then determine the tactics that we’re going to take. The tactics that we’re going to take.

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In other words, what are the specific actions that we’re going to put into place? Now those tactics are going to result in certain types of results but ultimately what ends up happening is that from the tactics once we see how they’re going we’re going to create Systems or Processes because if we’re trying to create consistency in an organization, in a business what we do is we start to systematize the thinking, the culture so we take that culture, we create a dialogue, we create tactics and then we systematize or process those tactics so we can get consistent results.

Whether you like the food or not which I don’t, McDonalds has a process and you get consistent crappy burgers. Sorry about that. I had to put an editorial in there. But you get consistent results so what ultimately happens is that we end up with systems which then start to drive our ultimate results. Now once we get the results, we don’t just sit back and rest, we actually look at it and say, “Alright, is this the results we want? Does it affect our values?” and there we get the cycle.

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So, what ultimately happens is we start with our values which creates our culture in the organization which create the dialogue and the movement in the organization which ultimately results in the tactics we’re going to use to take our product to the market, our service to the market, our people to the market; whatever it is and those tactics will then be systematized and be developed into processes which will create our results which ultimately may tweak or adjust our values, our culture and continue until we have this refined cycle continually growing.

This is the key to building out what I call the business persona. Once you do that, when you do this effectively,

  • People that work for you understand the culture
  • People that work for you will become loyal to you
  • People that work for you will fight for the outcomes you’re looking for

> Because it fulfils them in the process.

Now when it comes to your customers, they understand the culture of the organization, they understand the values of the organization, they understand your persona, they then start to do business with you not just because of the products and services but because of the identity that they identify with out of the organization, the persona that you have. And so, what you do is you create them.

Look at Apple for instance. Apple computers and I’m an Apple fanatic. Apple computers by all measurements are easily way overpriced from a utility standpoint but identify with the company, identify with their identity and how they do things and their product styling and the feel of the products and I pay for it and I realize that I could get the same utility out of a cheaper computer if I didn’t go to Apple but I still go to Apple. That’s what I’m talking about. That’s what we’re trying to create in the process and it is not about focus on the bottom line, it’s about focus on the business persona which creates a valued brand internally and externally as you move forward.

So that’s the business persona cycle. I hope that you found this of value to you and as you go forward. Do me a favor? If you haven’t done so already, make sure you get the action guide. Just go to MelAbraham.com/session079. If you’re not at your computer, once again, you can text me. Text MYLEGACY one-word to 38470. I will make sure that I send you the download link so you can get the guide for this session.

If you got questions or if you are having challenges in business, success, wealth, whatever it is; send me a question. Just go to AskMelNow.com. Leave me your question. I will make sure that I answer it on one of my upcoming episodes so we can make sure that you are supported in the journey that you are on, that you are supported trying to create the wealth, create the success, create the life and the freedom and the peace of mind that you’re looking to create.

And if you haven’t done so already, two more things that I’m going to ask you to do. First make sure you subscribe so we can stay together. I want to have a dialogue with you. Leave me your comments, leave me your question and do that but also share this with a friend. Get this information out there. I’m putting it out there to support people, to help people, to give them the tools that have allowed me to do the things that I have been blessed to do in my life with the businesses and the clients, the entrepreneurs, the thought leaders, thoughtpreneurs out there to help them develop businesses that fulfilled them, that helped them develop practices that fulfilled them and give them the income they need to live the life that they want to give them the freedom and peace of mind and I want that for you too.

So, I hope that this serves you and I look forward to hearing from you and until we get a chance to meet in the next episode,

May your vision be grand, your journey epic and your legacy significant!

See you soon. Cheers. Bye!!

— End Transcript —

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Like this? Please share it and help a few more people bring their dreams out of the darkness and give life to them again. Cheers, Mel

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