At Brown, each of our employees are given a Culture Book, and regardless of how long you have been with the company, you are expected to understand, appreciate and exemplify the values and guidelines upon which this company was founded.
As an home interior design firm in South Florida since 1976, we certainly recognize how vital creative design and functionality is to our success and our clients’ happiness. However, we also believe there is nothing more important than establishing lasting customer relationships built on trust and dedication.
We instill our value system in every member of our team, and we have done just that since we first opened our doors 43 years ago. It is the foundation upon which home interior design by Brown was built, and that is how it will forever remain.
We had always kept our culture book private, as it was developed as an internal resource. However, we decided to share a portion of it at this time because we feel it is important for the public to know how they can expect to be treated at Brown. For us, service and commitment to excellence are not just taglines or catch phrases…they are the embodiment of who we are as a company.
Straight from the book…
Brown was built upon a list of fundamental values that have served as the cornerstone of our success since 1976. We must never lose sight of these core principles, as they shape who we are as individuals and as a home interior design company.
In fact, these values are posted in our break room, and employees are asked throughout the year to describe to the team what each of the values mean to them. Culture is a big priority for us at Brown, as it sets the standard for who we are and how we operate. It is a major consideration during employee reviews, and it is a common topic of discussion at our monthly and quarterly meetings.
At Brown, we do not rely on the latest buzzwords or management fads. The success of our company always has — and always will — been dependent upon an unwavering daily
commitment to getting the basics of home interior design right.
Do what’s best for the client.
In all situations, act in the best interest of our client, even if it’s to our own detriment. Our reputation for integrity is one of our greatest assets.
Check your ego at the door.
Our own egos and personal agendas must never take precedence over doing what’s best for the team. Being concerned with who gets credit, who looks good and who looks bad is counter-productive. Making the best decision for the good of our company and clients must always be paramount.
Your work is a reflection of you.
Regard everything you touch as a personal statement that bears your signature. Take pride in the quality of what you produce.
Take the extra time to do things right the first time.
Don’t take shortcuts. The goal is to get things done correctly, not simply to get things done. If you don’t have time to do things right, how will you have time to do them twice?
Create Win/Win solutions.
Learn to think from others’ perspectives. Discover what those around you need, and find solutions that meet those needs while also fulfilling our own. Win/Win solutions are always longer lasting and more satisfying than Win/Lose solutions.
Practice blameless problem solving.
Treat mistakes as learning opportunities. Focus on the following questions…
What are our best options to solve the problem?
What have we learned that can help us avoid repeating the mistake?
How will we integrate that learning into new behaviors or practices?
Make decisions that reflect a reverence for long-term relationships.
Our primary goal is the long-term success of our company and our impact with home interior design. We must view all of our decisions and actions from this light.
Maintain a solution orientation rather than a problem orientation.
Focusing on problems drains energy. Apply your creativity, spirit and enthusiasm toward the development of solutions.
You reap what you sow.
Kindness begets more kindness. Trust begets more trust. We believe that most people genuinely want to do the right thing. Act out of this belief.
Keep things fun.
The world has much larger problems than our own. Keep perspective. Be light-hearted and smile.
Create a feeling of warmth and friendliness in every client interaction.
Every time you interact with a client you’re on stage. This includes calls, visits, voicemails, letters, e-mails, social media and other forms of communication. Make dealing with you an extraordinary and memorable home interior design experience.
Practice the “Human Touch.”
Treat people as individuals and show them you care. Look for opportunities to acknowledge their uniqueness and their humanness through small gestures of kindness (calls, cards, notes, gifts, etc.).
Communicate to be understood.
Know your audience. Write and speak in a way that they can understand. Use the simplest possible explanations.
Set and ask for expectations.
We judge situations not by what happens, but by how they compare to what we expect to happen. Learn to create mutually-understood expectations in every situation.
Follow-up on everything.
Internal and external clients rely on us and rely on others. Record a follow-up date for every action and take responsibility for its completion.
Be on time for all appointments, phone calls, meetings and promises. How you relate to time sends a message about how you relate to other commitments. Punctuality is an indication of respect for others.
Listen generously and carefully.
Learn to listen for the contribution in each individual who is speaking rather than stubbornly listening with our predetermined assessments, opinions and judgments in mind.
Speak honestly in a way that conveys our intentions. Make clear and direct requests. Be willing to contribute ideas or take positions that may result in conflict when it’s necessary to reach our
Be there for each other.
Seek opportunities to mentor and train others and to be supportive of one another’s success. Operate from the point of view that we’re all in this together and that none of us can truly win if it’s at the expense of someone else or the company. Look for greatness in home interior design and each other and provide support where and when needed.
Do what you say you’re going to do, when you say you’re going to do it. If a commitment cannot be fulfilled, notify others early and agree upon a new commitment to be honored.
Be a source for acknowledgment and appreciation.
Positive feedback is a tremendous energy source. Regularly give, receive and ask for meaningful appreciation and acknowledgment.
Take responsibility for your actions and decisions.
Don’t be a “victim.” Take ownership and carry out your assignment with your goals and objectives in mind. Ask for what you need and take full responsibility for your success.
Your personal appearance makes a strong statement about the pride you take in your performance. Dress neatly and professionally. The appearance of our office makes a similar statement about the quality of our work. See to it that our office environment is clean, neat and professional at all times.
Being organized makes a difference.
Maintain a clean and orderly work area. Use an effective task management system to keep
track of outstanding issues and responsibilities. Maintain an orderly filing system.
Double check all work.
Proofread all letters, e-mails, spreadsheets, etc., for accuracy and correctness.
Look ahead and anticipate.
Be better prepared by anticipating future home interior design needs and addressing them today. Identify and
understand issues in a timely manner. Strategically and critically think several steps ahead to avoid the mistakes that come with last-minute actions.
The quality of your answers is directly related to the quality of your questions.
Learn to ask yourself, “What information is missing? What do I need to know in order to make the best course of action evident?”
Be quick to ask and slow to judge.
Learn to gather all of the facts before making judgments. Be curious about additional information that may yield a more complete picture.
No is not an option.
We will always provide and alternative solution if we cannot accommodate or execute a specific home interior design request.