Until she was 11, my daughter didn’t care too much about her image. Although this made clothes shopping easier for a while, I knew it wouldn’t last. On a trip to the grocery store one afternoon, I heard it was starting to matter.
“Dad, I wanna look cool.”
“So people will like me.”
This chat started in the dairy department, so I grabbed and opened an egg carton. Holding an egg in each hand, I asked her if she can spot any difference between the two eggs. Now, what if I hard-boiled one of them? In focusing on strengthening the inside, I made the egg far more likely to survive a drop in one piece.
It’s a great metaphor for looking at your brand, too. Think of it as that egg. You can make it as pretty as you want, and it definitely helps to grab attention. However, the paint alone won’t make the shell any stronger. If the core of the business – the values, the purpose – is weak, all the coloring in the world won’t protect it when it’s “crunch” time.