By Jennifer Taylor, Taylor’d Events Group
Sure, we all need employees to help us with those pesky day-to-day tasks, but what about brand ambassadors? The difference between an employee and a brand ambassador is one of commitment and dedication to the brand and can make all the difference for a growing company.
Expanding your team isn’t always an easy choice – while you may need the help, it can be difficult to loosen the reins on a business that you’ve built from the ground up. How could anyone ever embody your brand as well as you? While it may seem like nobody could possibly understand the intricacies of your company, it’s important for all business owners to open up a bit and welcome new members to the team when necessary.
A great brand ambassador is one who will represent you and your company, not only in the office but in their personal lives as well. Look for someone who will champion your brand and share in your company values. When interviewing for an open position, come prepared with preferred qualities in mind: Do you want someone who is always on time? Self-motivated? Great team worker? The ideal characteristics will vary depending on your company culture and the position’s duties, but keep your values close as you find the very best fit.
Once you’ve selected the best candidate, it’s time to get your new hire on board with your company culture. From their very first morning, you need to engage them and make them feel as if they are a part of the team. It may be tempting to start by throwing all of their paperwork at them and assigning them some tedious to-dos, but it’s always best to work alongside them the first several days and ask them for their input. Invite them into staff meetings and get their thoughts on certain subject matters – the more they feel valued, the more committed they will be to your business.
In addition to office work, find ways to incorporate them into your outside activities. Looking ahead to a networking event? Get them a ticket and begin to introduce them to your industry peers! Headed off to a trade show? Bring them along and give them pointers about how to navigate the floor. Not only will you be providing valuable experience for your team members, but you’ll also be putting them in a position to handle things like networking events and trade shows on their own, in turn freeing up more time for you.
Think about your best and worst jobs – what kept you motivated and committed? What would you have changed? Leadership is an essential factor in the development of brand ambassadors, so remember to be present and be helpful.
Jennifer Taylor is the owner of Taylor’d Events Group, a planning firm that specializes in celebrations of all kinds in the Pacific Northwest and Maui. She is also the creator of The Taylor’d Plan, a self-administered class for wedding planners to grow and improve upon their skills.