Describe the culture and personality of your business

culture and personalityThe first step in creating your website is knowing your own personality.

That’s not a statement you’ll hear from most technical types, nor from sales people, and not often enough even from artists.

Assuming you provide a quality product or service, have something fairly worthwhile to say; that is, as long as what you’re selling (literally or metaphorically) isn’t outright rubbish, the most important part of your business is the emotional connection you make with suspects, prospects, and clients.

That emotional connection has to be genuine. There is no long-term benefit in a service business, and precious little in a retail business, trading with people you don’t like or who don’t like you. With upwards of 7 billion people on the planet, there is plenty of work even if you stick to folks you like.

The culture and personality of your business is fundamental to the personality of your website. You need a website which wears your personality as obviously as this website tells you that I’m exuberant and colorful.

Write a list of words that describe you, your business, your favorite clients. Ask those favorite clients what they like about working with you. Ask them what they’d like to see more of, and consider whether that should play a bigger role in your business culture. Perhaps not; client wishes aren’t always the best compass. But at least ask.

Your personality has so many dimensions it’s virtually impossible to clearly define it. However, psychologists tell us that there are only 5 dimensions where we all differ:

  1. Openness
  2. Conscientiousness
  3. Extroversion
  4. Agreeableness
  5. Neuroticism

Your business, like a TV character, can be a little less multidimensional. Not flat, characterless, but amplified, almost caricatured.

Consider the 5 categories as start points. Do you want your business perceived as open, exotic, always looking for something new, or as conservative, steady, reliable? (Don’t fall back on the old standby of “Both!” because it’s just not true, and it’s just not possible. Choose.) Is it outgoing, social, gregarious, or exclusive, an insider’s club? Laid back, or precise to the point of fussiness?

Identify where you fall on the continuum of openness, of extroversion, of neuroticism, and amplify it a little. Be what you are, but turn it up a little. Make your company’s personality obvious at a glance.

Now, find fun words to describe those three points, words that feel like you and the company you love.

Those three words should become evident to anyone who spends any time with your website.

Being conscientious and agreeable should be business fundamentals. Evidence also shows that during difficult economic times, amplifying these traits has little impact on entrepreneurial thinking.

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What do you think?