I do a lot of things, not all for money.
I recall whenever I visited my Mom while she was still spritely and alert, during our banter she would pause and get a puzzled look on her face. Then she would ask me in a serious tone: So, what is it that you do for money, my lovvie? I always found it difficult to explain, which meant she would keep asking because I hadn’t answered her question.
Over the years, I’ve only worked with companies where I believe in their products and services. As a marketer, one of the moral dilemmas I had to overcome early in my career, was that marketers don’t always behave ethically. Convincing people to do things that are not good for them, like smoking cigarettes, or eating unhealthy foods, or nudging people to spend money on stuff they don’t need or can’t afford, are a few examples of how marketing can be perceived as being morally questionable.
The term spin-doctor comes to mind.
It wasn’t only about the company’s products and services; I also needed to believe and trust the leadership team and enjoy the culture. There is something special working for a company with like minded folks and where the positive vibe is contagious. It’s easy to be energised and motivated is such an environment.
Setting out the vision and purpose for Leap First, we laid down some non-negotiable principles. These form the foundation of the business. It was important that we create an environment where being authentic mattered.
- Generosity – Always be ‘giving’ without expecting anything in return – Always.
- Positive Attitude – There is never a bad day. A bad hour or two, but never a bad day.
- High EQ – Having high emotional intelligence is an imperative – call it being an adult.
- Kindness – There is always room for more and you must share, even if it feels stupid.
- Fake-it-till-you-make-it – It works. It works in both your personal and business life. Being willing and able is obviously imperative.
- Caring – Maximum empathy levels at all times in all circumstances.
- Being ‘Human’ – Never ever automate or outsource ‘you;’ there is no substitute for dealing with a human who listens carefully and responds well.
- Permission – Only ever approach folks who have given you permission to ‘interrupt’ them. Build a consistent and authentic rapport with your audience. Nurture, nurture, nurture. Permission is one of the pillars in our Rules of Engagement.
- Values – Appreciate and display common-sense, high values and being principally sound.
- Non-discrimination – A clear understanding that discrimination of any kind (Race, gender, religion, etc.) is to be stamped out.
- We make mistakes – The human brokenness is real for us, but we believe in taking risks. We fail. Often. Without it ever being fatal. Our successes just taste sweeter.
- It’s safe – We create a safe space for you to be yourself and show your worth, without fear of being ridiculed but rather encouraged.
- Vulnerable – We start more sentences with, ‘I might be wrong?’
So here in one sentence is what I do for money:
Leap First is a full-service marketing consultancy that aligns your brand touchpoints with the company’s strategic efforts; to positively influence the perception of the brand in the hearts and minds of your chosen audience.
I hope you have an awesome weekend. 😉
* (Feel free to drop me a mail firstname.lastname@example.org I’d like that.)
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