Everybody knows, “Without Vision, People Perish.”
But what is a Vision really? I hope to bring this question to light.
A Vision is simply a declaration statement of what you intent to see happen in your future (whether personal or corporate) and how this vision can help shape the world for the better. It must be inspiring, energizing, and have the ability to gather like-minded people to the same cause(s). It be must served as the fundamental way you make decisions throughout your personal and business life as well as shaping the behaviors of your people at all levels of in your business. It must be enduring regardless of the economic cycles. This is what we considered an effective Vision Statement must accomplish.
Let’s take a look at some effective Vision Statement from some successful companies;
Walmart — “Saving People Money to Help People Live Better.”
Microsoft — “To Help People and Businesses Throughout the World to realise their Full Potential.”
Google — “To Organize the World’s Information and Make it Universally Accessible and Useful.”
Nike — “To Bring Inspiration and Innovation to Every Athlete in the World.”
Take a minute and read the abovementioned Vision Statements slowly. Do you feel that you would like to be part of those companies? Do you feel energized from within yourself? Do you feel attracted to them?
Chances are, you feel attracted to them, you felt energized from within, and you want to be part of them. This is the power of an effective Vision Statement.
Now, let’s take a look at your Vision Statement for your business. What? You don’t have one?
Business owners who do not have an effective Vision Statement for their business are the exact business owners who struggle on a daily basis, fire-fighting with the business, employees, suppliers, customers, and stakeholders. They are too busy fire-fighting on a daily basis to look into growth of their companies. They will not have any significant breakthroughs in their business and as such they disappear from the business world after a few years. Probably they would be better off as a “Firefighter” than a business owner.
Now, assuming you have a Vision Statement for your company. Take a look at it again. Does it fulfil all the above mentioned criterias for an effective Vision Statement? If it does, then I know you are thriving in your business, no question about it. However, if it doesn’t, then this is the time to change for the better. There’s no need to blame yourself. You are not alone. Almost 90% businesses are in your shoes.
Here are the basic steps to an effective Vision Statement for your company:
- Gather your management team for a retreat over the weekend. Ask them questions such as, “What business are we in?”, “What are we trying to achieve?”, “What should be our Core Values and Guiding Principles?” and “What is our future like?”.
- Allow them to write down all their thoughts without any judgement from one another. Reserve their rights.
- Meet again 3 weeks down the road and ask the same questions for any changes and inspirations.
- Gather your Vision Statement with the Core Values and Guiding Principles and gain the management’s buy-in.
- Thereafter, share it all across your company. Share it with your suppliers, customers, stakeholders.
- Gather their feedback and buy-in.
- Improve on it, finalise it, and publish it on all your notice boards, all printing collaterals, and all visible places for all your customers, supplier, and stakeholders to see.
Above are some of the steps we take to help our clients come up with an effective Vision Statement for their business. It will take you some time. But our advice is that you do not rush the process. The main idea is that you want to take it slow and gather all people in your company including your stakeholders to buy into your Vision Statement. This is the first step to a thriving business where everyone is inspired, energized, and attracted to want to work for you, to contribute to your business, and do business with you.
I hope this article has added some value to you and your time in reading it. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org if you needed more information or assistance.