Does Your Company Have a Business Image Manual

Every business regardless of size needs a "Business Image Manual" to protect their band. Even the smallest companies with only a few employees is well served when there is a business image manual in place. For 15 years I ran a small business, which I eventually franchised and later expanded to 23-states and 4 countries. What I had learned after franchising is that; I should have written my image manual 10-years prior. At first my business was just me alone; like most small businesses, but then due to my hard work and customer service, I had to expand to meet demand. Each time I added people to the team, I seemed to be rehashing over and over again my theories on business image. Often I would have to harp on the issue with part time employees or even summer help. What I needed was a manual. However, being a head strong entrepreneur in those days, I like many entrepreneurs of small businesses said; "What do I need a bunch of manuals or even a business plan for that matter?" After all most of us know our businesses very well and we do not have to write it down. We just know thru intuition what will work and why and surprisingly we end up making few mistakes, but when we do they are usually quite large and costly lessons.

Not having a Business Image Manual can be such a problematic mistake, one, which trust me you do not want to make or need to for that matter. Franchising later taught me how important it was to have the image of my companies under a tight reign and as the company grew larger and larger, I was happy to have learned that lesson, I just wish I had not learned it the hard way. Now mind you I am not in the same industry as you are, in fact my business is not like other businesses at all. It may in fact be quite dissimilar to your business model, but this outline below will help you design your own "Business Image Manual." I recommend you start be re-writing this outline to most mirror your business or company and then write two-paragraphs for each item. It will come to just over ten pages and from there you can elaborate further. In the end you will end up with a 20-30 page Business Image Manual, which will provide you with years of enhanced brand recognition and enough customers to fulfill your business dreams for future years. IMAGE

I. ATTIRE

A. Company Shirts

B. Shorts

C. Hats

D. Grooming

E. Managers

F. Employees

G Independents

II. SPEECH

A. Sales Tapes

B. Positive, Confidence

C. Smile-Caring, Not Phony

D. No-No's (Politics, Religion, Racial)

III. TRUCK

A. Cleanliness

B. Rentals

C. Magnetics

D. Signage

E. Color Codes

F. Tires

IV. EQUIPMENT

A. Stainless Steel

B. Paint, Touch Ups

C. Lights

D. Vacuum Cleaner

E. Extractor

F. Noise

V. TRUCK BED

A. Diamond Plate

B. Boxes

C. Trash

D. Bed Area

VI. PAGER

A. Vibrate Mode

B. Wear It

C. Etc.

VII. MANAGER RESPONSIBILITIES

A. Customer Contact

B. Mannerism

C. Crew

"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs

In The News:

Small business is big business in SC  Charleston Regional Business
Goldman Sachs Started 7300 Small Businesses. What's Next?  Harvard Business School Working Knowledge
Small Business Hiring Slows  The Wall Street Journal

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