About 25 years ago, we purchased a great 30,000 square foot office building on a beautiful eight-acre campus. Soon after, I met with the signage company to finalize the wording for our sign. At first it seemed like a no brainer that the sign should read “Proforma Headquarters,” but that wording didn’t align with the culture of the company I wanted to build.

I wanted to build a company with a culture of support and service—especially supporting and servicing our growing network of owners. I never wanted anyone with our company to be talking with one of our owners and say, “Well, I’m with headquarters and…” It seemed to me that there’s a certain arrogance that comes with the word “headquarters” that I did not want in our company.

So, we called the building our “Support Center.” I liked the way it would sound when our team members would be talking with an owner and say, “I’m with the Support Center and…” The very words “support center” remind our team every day of our real mission and purpose.

Perhaps we are the only company in the industry without a “headquarters,” and it’s a good thing.

The bottom line is words matter. Words can shape the culture of your organization. Choose your words according to your desired culture, not your ego.