One of the highlights of our weekend away in Northampton was meeting Bridget who we hadn’t seen for ages and sharing a rant against the nonsense that is corporate writing, especially when it claims to explain values and purpose.
My frustrated crossness had been sparked by a Monsoon bag that we’d used to carry the overspill from our small suitcase. Beneath the logo were the words “Living Our Values & Ethics since 1973” which obviously tells you a lot about the company.
First and foremost, the reassuring message that this mid-range clothing company actually has both “values” and “ethics”, but is also clever enough to come up with a tagline that not only spells out its message, but also spells LOVE.
This is a company that wants us to wear well-fitting clothes while setting our minds at rest that they are also concerned about the worries of the world rather than, say, making shed loads of money.
But what exactly are these values and ethics? Sadly, that’s where it gets a little vague. I tried the Monsoon website, but the search terms “values” and “ethics” produced zero results.
And that made me wonder what exactly the values and ethics of a clothing company might be beyond keeping up with the latest trends in hemlines and the non-exploitation of foreign labour.
It was timely then that the latest post from Good Copy, Bad Copy should be the first in a series on how not to write your company core values. I’m looking forward to the rest.
It also reminded me of this excellent Stewart Lee skit on the values of the Car Phone Warehouse that could easily apply to Monsoon.