Peter Pan Culture

Forever Young

What’s been around for 160 years, but hasn’t gotten old?alexis smith peter pan culture


The secret to their immortality? In part, Director of Employee Branding, Alexis Smith, along with 19,000 other dedicated innovators.

As soon as Alexis began speaking at Propelify, three things became abundantly clear:

  1. She’s Canadian. “Owt” and “Uh-bowt” were dead giveaways. Plus, it’s the first thing she told us.
  2. She’s a creative thinker, who is addicted to solving problems and challenges. (She may have said this too.)
  3. Her passion and entrepreneurial mindset are infectious and empowering. We figured that one out for ourselves.

Passion and an entrepreneurial mindset are to whom she owes her success. But how can you be an entrepreneur in a company that’s been around for over a century and a half?

“It’s about understanding your employees the same way you understand your consumers,” she said. “They need to feel valued and appreciated. Admit where you have gaps, and find out how you can close them.”

Faith, trust…

Any successful businessperson will tell you that their most valuable asset is their employees. Your company is nothing without the ones who choose to have faith in your brand, and work their you-know-whats off in order to turn strangers into customers who trust you.

The team at Anheuser Busch, who come up with cutting edge marketing techniques like the Budweiser Red Light, personify the entrepreneurial mindset that keeps the billion dollar company from getting old. I like to call it, Peter Pan Culture.

Peter Pan Culture

Peter Pan Culture employs new, creative, imaginative, passionate, and adventurous business plans that keep organizations young forever. Companies of this culture thrive by encouraging autonomy, empowering employees to find solutions and take risks, and forbidding bureaucracy or scalability from getting in in the way of innovation and progress.

What do these employees look like? Alexis described them as:

  • Passionate
  • Driven
  • Diverse of thought
  • Able to wear many hats
  • Enthusiastic
  • Goal-getting
  • Strategic

At the end of the day, it all comes down to people. Whether there are 19 or 19,000 employees, Peter Pan companies operate on the basis of growth without age, and face business as an adventure.

And a little bit of pixie dust

alexis smith peter pan cultureWho is putting their faith and trust in you, and how can you inspire them to not only see the magic in your company, but be the magic in your company?

Hire for talent, but also hire for drive.

Hire for experience, but also hire the adventurous.

Inspire your current employees by letting them have the autonomy they need, don’t hold them down.

You might not know it, and they might not either, but they can fly.

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