News that Wal Mart, the world’s largest retailer, is giving itself a new image via its logo fascinates me. From what I’ve been able to tell online the new logo isn’t much different than the last, but to logo experts, I guess it’s a pretty big deal. The bigger deal for me is that they are changing it at all. They remain Wal Mart. The giant, mega-sized corporation that no one seems to be able to fully compete with doesn’t appear to need the help of a more modern symbol to represent its supremacy. Or does it?
The king of retail has faced challenges on numerous fronts in recent years from employee lawsuits and threats of unionizing to more challenges than ever to locating in certain areas. Some don’t want the giant retailer in their neighborhood, and, not accustomed to being told no, Wal Mart is now losing the battle in some communities they have tried to enter. Reports also indicate that Wal Mart hired an outside public relations firm several years ago to look at ways to improve their image among workers and consumers. Perhaps this new logo is a product of their work.
As a church leader, I think this teaches me more than just to be looking for a new symbol when I need bargain toilet paper (or whatever else I need). I think it reminds me that if Wal Mart must continually evaluate things as simple as logos (really not so simple), then surely we do in the church.
So, consider these questions: What does your organizations current logo say about you? Is it still saying what you intend it to say? Does it adequately communicate your vision? Is it warm, inviting and reflective of the organization you are today? Is it time for a change? More importantly, what about the image of your organization that your logo represents? Could it use an overhaul? Finally, and this is a hard question, if a fancy PR firm, the kind only Wal Mart could afford, told you that people think you stink, do you believe in success enough to humble yourself and change?