Slogans and Logos: Unveiling the Reality of Cayuse
In business, slogans and logos are used as a means of identification and familiarity. Slogans make use of a short phrase, motto, or buzzword, to attract employees and entice potential clients. Logos provide a visual representation of a company through an image, photo, or artwork. Both are used to serve as mental triggers to entice and remind consumers of a service, product, or business.
There are, for example, logos that once seen, have an immediate association. Envision the Target ‘bullseye’ or Starbucks’ use of the mythological figure Siren. Even if unfamiliar with mythology and who a Siren is, their logo likely still comes to mind.
There are also several slogans that have become embedded in our minds, such as:
“The happiest place on Earth” – Disneyland
“Just do it” – Nike
“Finger lickin’ good’ – Kentucky Fried Chicken
“Have it your way” – Burger King
A stark difference exists, however, between businesses who merely extend the physicality of a slogan or logo, and those who embrace the culture to which it is connected. While a well-crafted representation might catch attention momentarily, it is the authentic integration and embodiment of a company culture that truly sets successful organizations apart – and brings the slogans and logos to life.
Imagine a scenario where a company proudly utilizes a slogan or displays a logo that claims to represent the prioritization of collaboration, innovation, and employee well-being. This slogan might be a focus of their website, brochures and even office walls. On the surface, it sounds appealing and aligns with the aspirations of many job seekers and consumers. However, what happens when you step inside the organization’s doors?
Too often, the reality falls short of what the trademark promises. Employees might find themselves working in silos, with innovation stifled by bureaucracy, and well-being sacrificed for the pursuit of short-term gains. This glaring disconnection between what is professed and what is true can lead to disillusionment, decreased employee engagement, and a loss of credibility in the eyes of clients and partners.
Now, picture a company that doesn’t just tout a slogan, but deeply embeds its core values and principles into each facet of its operations. This company understands that embracing culture isn’t a superficial endeavor. Instead, it is a transformative journey that requires commitment, authenticity, and ongoing effort. This genuine, holistic approach elicits belief, trust, and dedication.
Such alignment between what is represented externally and what is portrayed internally brings about positivity and encouragement that benefits the entire organization. Through genuine alignment between owners, leaders, staff, and company representation:
- Managers can lead by example rather than trying to ‘duck and cover’ from a motto that is a mismatch.
- Employees feel empowered to do their best each day.
- Communication is transparent, focused, and easily geared toward the betterment of the organization.
- Employees and investors feel more comfortable engaging in a long-term commitment with a company that follows the persona it advertises.
- Measurable, positive impacts can be noted.
Since 1987, the slogan for American Express has been ‘Membership has its privileges’. It is clear that the leaders and employees within the organization believe that as well. American Express has been voted the top third company to work for in 2023, with employees stating that ‘Amex has a sincere and exhibited focus on customers and colleagues – it is not lip service, leadership consistently backs our customers and colleagues’.
Slogans and logos are powerful, especially when they are a true representation of the business and the people within it.
In the Beginning
Our visionary Native American founder had a true mission when he started Cayuse. As a member of the Oglala Lakota (Sioux nation) and Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Reservation (CTUIR), his inspiration and unwavering dedication shaped the Cayuse purpose - ‘Grow the company, grow the people’. Such a slogan empowers talent that aligns with core values while embracing diversity to amplify the range of opportunities we offer. This enriches our perspectives, fuels innovation, and motivates us to make a meaningful impact in the lives of those we serve.
In 2007, the first group of Cayuse employees, board members, and tribal leadership gathered for an all-hands meeting where they performed team building exercises and planned for the future of Cayuse. One of the outcomes of this multi-day session was the creation of six core values. They have become a ‘collective’ slogan of sorts, and they are at the forefront of the work we perform each day.
Cayuse’s six core values are:
- Work Ethic - We are proud of our dedication to professionalism, and we hold ourselves accountable in all our actions. Our actions reflect positively on ourselves, Cayuse, and the communities we serve.
- Quality - Our quality is a reflection of our proud heritage of integrity, preparation, and persistence.
- Harmonious Heart- We are loyal, honest, and mighty! We are a responsible workforce that achieves its goals and perseveres regardless of the challenge. We are passionate in what we do.
- Teamwork/Family - We are a close-knit team of fiercely committed professionals working together to achieve the common goals of client and personal satisfaction.
- Integrity - We consider integrity to be the highest standard to which we aspire. We dedicate ourselves to developing strong relationships built on trust, pride, and loyalty.
- Diversity - We welcome and embrace a free community of diverse people bonded by trust, respect, and unity.
This first Cayuse collaboration resulted in the creation of an original logo using the Cayuse horse to host each of the core values. The horse is a crossbreed of the French Percheron and Spanish Barb which were specifically selected to produce a breed that is smaller and stockier in size and has both great speed and endurance.
On the logo, the shadow on the face of the horse signifies drive and experience. The feather embodies our vision of a seven-generation legacy. The five arrowheads surrounding the horse represent five of our core values. The circle binds them together to signify our sixth core value of teamwork and family.
This inaugural group of people laid a solid foundation for the company we have become and to this day, the original paintings are proudly displayed in our company headquarters.
When authenticity and commitment stand behind slogans and logos, the result is a thriving, cohesive, and resilient workforce that drives the company toward sustainable success.
Cayuse, a Native American company, is represented by words and artwork that stem from the true roots of our creation. They provide the very foundation from which our work is performed, and our dedication is steadfast.
Embracing company culture goes beyond empty words on a billboard or meaningless images on a business card. It’s about fostering an environment where each employee is a living embodiment of the organization’s values - and then extending that beyond the company walls, for the benefit of others as well.
In a world inundated with catchy slogans and marketing gimmicks, it’s refreshing to encounter organizations that ‘walk the walk’. Cayuse’s slogan goes beyond the role of a motto or icon. It embraces the true meaning of why the company was founded and what it intends to continue to do – to help others live a better life.
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