How Borgification is fatal to brands

LIVELONG2Even a casual Star Trek viewer has heard of the legendary Borg. So united in purpose and mission, they were stronger than almost anyone else. The Borg were also scary, evil and incredibly nasty.

Some companies have developed a Borg-like mentality that will cripple their organization if they don't attack it head-on.

Here are two real-life ways it kills:

1. Hive mentality
"We are Borg. You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile." Group think becomes overpowering. New ideas are pushed out because they don't fit the hive mentality that's developed.

Diversity is squashed. Innovation is squelched and profits erode.

2. Us vs. them
Many will recognize this experience: the employees so loyal to their employer that they counterintuitively neglect or even abuse customers. When a client expresses dissatisfaction, the employee rushes to the defense of... the employer.

Instead of listening to the client concern and addressing it, the employee makes excuses or ignores the problem altogether.

Customer loyalty erodes. Dissatisfaction grows and revenue crumbles.

Brands need balance
The Borg are in pursuit of perfection. They can dominate with their common power for a while. But eventually, they're doomed to fail because the collective consciousness means that no single member takes responsibility. Marketing fails to deliver customers. Their strength becomes their weakness.

A well-aligned brand seeks not to assimilate, but to learn, grow and evolve. It develops two-way relationships with both its customers and with its employees. Only then can it live long and prosper.

Sign up for MB Piland's enews here to learn how smart marketing can keep the Borg and other nasties away from your brand.

TAGS: business strategy, marketing, purpose, internal brand, alignment, profit

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