Brand, purpose and culture are three pillars that underpin the equation of business success. They are not the only elements involved, but without the alignment between them it will be very difficult to survive in the world that is coming to us. Or that it’s already here.

Today it is no longer enough to simply “have” a purpose. No matter how good your team is, it will be impossible for them to take you into the future without a clear vision of where they are going. In the same way, no matter how good your brand strategy is and even if it is perfectly designed, it will not achieve success without having a team of committed people who can bring it to life.

Brands are nourished by their values in the creation of their purpose, thus building emotional connections with those who feel the same way and share the same vision. They can be strengthened through purpose, as long as they are able to frame that purpose frames the roadmap, what they offer, and how they deliver it. Purpose should permeate everything, and it’s not enough to tell nice superficial stories.

Culture is responsible for defining behaviors that reinforce the brand’s being. It’s like the heart of the system. If the heart is strong, the body responds well and can deliver that feeling to the outside. If employees share the organization’s purpose, they have an easier time conveying it to customers, thus increasing their engagement. Just think about how you are served in an Apple store versus the attention you receive in many other establishments.

Some brands such as Patagonia, Tom’s or Auara were born with a clear purpose. For many others who, because of their history or circumstances, came to life without him, this is a major challenge. There is no point in building and framing it without having the ability to put it into action. Purpose is only powerful when it truly comes to life, when it acts as the engine of the business. And what is it that gives life to a purpose? The people, and the culture they share united around an inspiring and clear future, with a vision of how to get there. The founder of Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard, instructed the human resources department that “whenever we have a vacancy, all things being equal, hire the person who is committed to saving the planet, no matter what the job is.” It is not enough to lead with a purpose, it is necessary to fulfill the purpose.

Linking brand, purpose, and culture

Although purpose has been accepted by many companies and brands as a strategic priority, many still struggle to activate it and link it directly to the company culture. The problem usually lies in the fact that many companies continue to operate under the scheme of independent silos, where the relationship between different areas is scarce. That is why it needs to be promoted from the top so that it permeates each of the members of the organization. Branding, marketing, talent, production… They must all be aligned under the same inspiring vision. Only when employees understand why the brand is really important, how it drives the company’s actions and behavior according to values, can they then align effectively.

Today, a leader must understand that the alignment of management, operations, strategy, marketing, and culture not only distinguishes high-performing companies from mediocre ones, but achieves a more consistent impact on growth and profits. The exclusive focus on production and profitability must be open to obtaining yields without negative side effects and, at the same time, considering the opportunities to create positive effects. Always under our own brand strategy based on shared beliefs. Something that goes beyond creating an inspirational phrase and helps employees understand why and customers understand why we are here.

Branding, purpose, and culture are critical to the success of any business. Investing in the brand is a good first step in taking the business and its people in the right direction. But when you invest in branding, you also need to invest in culture and not shy away from the power of purpose.

Aligning around purpose and delivering on it at every touchpoint should always be a strategic priority. Infusing it into the culture helps motivate the team by decreasing the risks derived from any obstacles.


Carlos Puig Falcó

CEO of Branward

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