As well as colour psychology, certain parts of the world also have symbolic associations with particular colours.
If you are going to launch your product outside of your own familiar culture, you might need to know that your lucky green suggests corruption in North Africa or your wholesome brown is a mourning colour in India.
See the table below for more cultural cues – and remember that whatever the cultural association, the physiological reaction to the colour will still be the same (eg red raises the heart-rate) so both need to be considered.
I was recently asked by a community organisation for my top tips to how they should be structured based on my personal views, Bold Vision, business / third sector / life experience. I decided to share them here…
1. If people don’t know why they are there they’ll stop showing up
It’s a bit awkward not having a role. My first boss would not allow anybody in a meeting unless they had a role since no role = no value = no self esteem.
- SO –> deciding on the roles after an early settling down period (which I would argue you are coming to the end of now) is likely to make the group more effective AND more motivated.
- TIP: make the role 12 months so people don’t feel like they are signing their lives away. They can always do another 12 months at the end if they want to.
2. Operational issues will always crowd out strategic ones
Whatever our good intentions, very few people can develop the battle plan at the same time as digging the trench. Committees that try to do both end up having frustrating meetings and never quite getting round to the difficult questions
- SO–> it helps to have operational teams and strategic teams. Both types of teams report back to the full committee (concisely!) especially regarding action items / key decisions.
- TIP: this requires some trust and some “letting go”. Usually in the early days everybody has done everything. That’s not sustainable
3. Ground rules shape the space
We identified our values in Bold Vision early on (openness, courage, mutuality and potentialising) and this gives a good yardstick for decision making and process management eg “are we being open enough?”, “is that the courageous decision?”. We also found we needed rules of engagement about respect for others’ efforts, looking out for each other, honesty and so on.
- SO–> spend an hour in a brainstorm together to identify the values and ground rules of the group then stick to them (I can do that for you if it helps, it’s part of my day job)
- TIP: it seems like an activity that can be postponed when there is a lot going on (ref 2 above!!) but it saves a lot of time and unnecessary grief so really worth investing an hour in
4. Less is more
In Bold Vision we want maximum engagement AND decision making capacity. So we have several layers.
- 3 directors + company secretary.treasurer (for formal stuff. More would just make admin more complex)
- 9 on management team (we try to not use the word committee coz it makes me feel bored already). We have had more and less but this seems to be a good number. The only formal roles are chair and company secretary
- 5 or so action teams, each led by one of management team and involving a loose gang of 5-15 volunteers
- 70-100 Bold Backers (who have given money or time/effort) who will shortly be invited to be members. This will give them voting rights at AGM, ability to nominate directors or mgmt team members and a hopefully an increased sense of ownership
- 500 people on our mailing list
- SO–> consider a structure that is manageable for your group, will be transparent to the outside world and includes all the relevant interest groups somewhere
- TIP: go for a next-12-months structure first, it can always be amended as the organisation finds its feet
If this is not specific enough then shout, otherwise have fun with it 🙂
Lastly, in my view, don’t start with what the council/funder wants (they may have no track record in this field!) it matters what works to deliver YOUR objectives while giving those involved a chance to flourish too (and not get burned out)
We run live inclusive, conclusive conversations with up to 1000 participants anywhere in the world. Get to the heart of the subject matter in hours so you can focus your resources on what works.
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Like it or not, we are all influenced by the chemistry and physiology of colour. Getting it right can clear away customer misgivings about your product and help you sell more. Getting it wrong can undermine your brand and make the customer nervous about your reliability.
Choose the right Colour Profile for your retail outlet, environment, brand or publications can amke all the difference.
We have worked with organisations like 20th Century Fox, Ricoh, Syracuse University, Learning and Skills Council and Bendicks as well as many start ups to define and improve the way colour works for them.
Catherine Shovlin is a Colour Affects Accredited Consultant trained by Angela Wright in 2003.
Our research suggests that as much as 85% of materials designed to convince employees or citizens about something are completely ignored. Not a great score.
But it doesn’t have to be like that. We produce a detailed Mindset Profile of your customers that is more likely to get their attention and help them decide to buy your product or service.
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