The Grand Bahama Island Tourism Board, in conjunction with The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, embarked on a branding exercise for Grand Bahama Island in late 2006 by contracting the services of Ypartnership (formerly YPB&R) and IDEAS to develop a distinctive and compelling brand strategy for Grand Bahama Island (GBI). GBI has experienced a slow down in tourism over the past decade that was exacerbated by several hurricanes. A new brand was needed that could differentiate GBI from the increasingly competitive Caribbean destination marketplace. The answer? “The Grand Life.”
A set of stakeholders participated in an IDEAS StoryJam™ creative process to generate the GBI story crucial to creating and delivering on the new brand. Then, using our unique Culture Mapping process, we came to understand the culture of the island by listening to the lore, traditions, and collective experience of the people who live and work there. Before launching the brand to the public, IDEAS created The Grand Life Enculturation Toolkit, which includes an eLearning component and a live face-to-face classroom experience to be rolled out to all employees and residents on the island.
Armed with the knowledge of who the GBI people are and how they communicate, IDEAS created the Toolkit to facilitate the learning of both young hospitality employees and those seasoned employees and residents that may have become disillusioned in recent years by the drop in tourism. The goal is for everyone who lives and works on GBI to live the brand promise and to consistently deliver “GRAND Hospitality” as ambassadors of GBI. Using the right story and believable characters, the tools carry the learners on a journey that engages and motivates them to live the brand. This 21st century equivalent of sharing stories around the campfire is designed to be delivered both online and in person so that anyone on GBI can experience it.
In addition to an understanding of the new brand and the GBI hospitality standards, learners also have the opportunity to get to know the flora, fauna, and heritage of GBI so they can inform their guests of the diverse offerings of their island. This toolkit adheres to sound instructional design principles and directly addresses serious issues relevant to the people in the hospitality industry. The online solution is mirrored by the face-to-face classroom materials that IDEAS created, using the same storytelling and rich media content. Real interviews and stories are included so that Grand Bahamians can talk to Grand Bahamians about what it means to deliver “The Grand Life” to their guests.