Written by Caroline Lavigne on September 24, 2020.
Introducing Penelope – our NewLeaf corporate persona.
Penelope came about as I was working on our Brand Positioning. I thought to myself: How can we ensure that our employees’ personal and professional actions reflect the essence of the NewLeaf brand?
I initially started with writing down principles to guide our team’s activities. The list of adjectives to frame NewLeaf’s desired radiated tone evolved into a list of humanistic characteristics. Having previously read about, thought of, and imagined similar concepts, I was finally putting “pen to paper” to what I’ve long envisioned as an Organizational Persona.
Funny story about Penelope’s name. Us Leafers (as we happily call ourselves) sometimes refer to our organization as NLP (NewLeaf Performance). As I brainstormed the list of adjectives, I thought to myself…
- NLP is authentic…
- NLP is informed…
- NLP… Enellepe’s persona is called Penelope.
With a name, Penelope became a person; I could see her in my mind. I found a few inspirational characters to put a face to Penelope before scheduling a LeafStorm (NewLeaf’s version of a brainstorm) to bring the team in on it.
I facilitated an interactive process which enabled us to co-create her from our shared values, beliefs, goals, priorities; everything that composes our organization was inspiration for who Penelope is. She quickly grew and evolved into the definition of the “Aspirational Leafer”.
Then, we worked with an awesome illustrator to bring Penelope to life. It surprised us how quickly Penelope became part of our team. We automatically found ourselves saying things like “What would Penelope say?”, “What would Penelope do?” and “How would Penelope show up in this interaction?”
A corporate persona acts as a touchstone for employee actions and behaviours. Beyond that, Penelope is a friend that we all have in common. She guides us towards our common vision–our common goals. We all look up to Penelope and can relate to one another, through her.
Before Penelope, we never knew we needed a corporate persona; now that we have her, we can’t imagine our organization without her. The facilitated process of co-developing a corporate persona can have an incredible impact on employee commitment and dedication, which improves culture and wellness, resulting in better performance.
If you would like to know more about effectively developing a corporate persona, please don’t hesitate to contact us and it will be our pleasure to chat with you.