Business personality

Is it a higher meaning or simply a business personality?

Simon Sinek’s mantra is that people do business because of what you believe, not what you do. It is an interesting idea. Why is it that some people work really well together and others just don’t connect? In reality there really isn’t a great deal of difference between businesses in the services or products that they sell. There are very few revolutionary new ideas. But what there is is an unimaginable number of personalities. And those personalities create different cultures and different ways of doing business.

Think of business personality as your USP

I’m not so sure that, as per Sinek’s ideas, we all have a deeper reason for doing things. Not everyone is on a mission, or covets a strong sense of ‘why’ they do something. But I do very passionately believe that every company has a different business personality. This is particularly true for small to medium sized companies where the owner is engaged in the business still. Gradually the business personality changes once shareholders and markets become more involved, unless the strength of the business rests on larger than life personalities.

Revealing your business personality

It might take an expert outside the business to find it, but that unique feel to a business will be present. The challenge to a business is not just in spotting the personality. It also lies in how much becomes public, in how you tell your story. ‘Who sees what’ will forever test the minds of PR consultants and copywriters. How natural can you be with your audiences? Just how much can you give away? This is where deciding on key messages really pays. If you want to boost your profile in a marketplace, you have to have a good idea about what you want to be famous for. And you have to make sure that runs through everything – what you do, how you do it, how you look. Because it’s all part of reputation.

So if you are cautious and risk averse, don’t position yourself as cutting edge creative. Find another way to be different. And please, don’t just cut your prices. No person wants to be known for being cheap. Why would you want it for your business?


Josie Fitzhugh is a PR consultant from Auckland. She runs a business called co-writer, working with businesses in Auckland, across New Zealand and overseas. She positions businesses, helping them get the right messages across to people that matter most.