What's culture got to do with it?

What does culture have with creating and growing a successful online business? The answer is simple: it has EVERYTHING to do with creating and growing a successful online business.

When we consult with e-commerce businesses, the first thing we look at is the culture of the brand, even if this is a new company. Because it is your brand culture that will come through in all that you do. If your sales and marketing tactics are at odds with your company values, then guess what? your sales and marketing won’t work in the long term because where there is a clash, culture wins every time.

When Matt became the CEO of Jersey Beauty Company, the first thing that we did was define the culture of the company and brand, it is the reason that everything else worked. Culture is the main thing that the CEO should work on in their business.

Brand culture is the culmination of your attitudes, behaviours and values as a company. Every company has a culture, even if it is not defined. Your company, your online store, your team, your technology, the way you sell and the way you do customer service are outcomes of your company culture. You’ve either designed this or it has happened by default.

But what is culture?

Culture is simply the joining of your values, attitudes and behaviours. Your attitudes determine your behaviours. Just what are values? They are principles, moral standards, by which you will operate. Values are your creed. They are your boundaries. The truth is, we all have a set of values. We may have never verbalised them, written about them or defined them but we have a value set. Here, according to Tony Hseih at Zappos, is why they values are essential in a business:

  1. Values create a self-managed company
  2. Values make the decisions
  3. Values create the right experience
  4. Values are bigger than people, trends and vision

In the next blog post I will elaborate on this topic and show you how to get clarity on your company’s core values.