Can you lead without a vision?

As Yogi Bera once said, “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.”

Wordcount: 427 Time to read: 3 minutes

I find the volume of information delivered through social media and the pace of delivery exhausting. Meteoric growth has amped human communications into warp speed leaving casualties in its wake. Among them is the vision statement, a loss with significant cost to business potential.

Most great organizations sprout from a visionary seed watered by entrepreneurial vision. That is the allure of a vision statement and the magical effect it can have on the business that creates one.

Yet, for reasons unknown, strategic planning maintains a strong business presence. In what seems nothing more than a different way of saying the same thing, the reason for strategic planning is to ‘purposely strive to achieve a specific goal or end result’, a.k.a. a vision.

I sense a cruel irony in the derision of vision statements while strategic planning is alive and well, an irony that highlights one fundamental conflict eating away at organizational success.

You can’t have an effective strategy without a clear vision.

Among the three indicators of success identified in my Business Manager’s Reality Inquiry (mBRMI), the vision statement is the glue that holds the ‘Purpose Indicators’ together. Being one of the most difficult for leadership to capture and document, the vision statement becomes the easiest to ignore.

Making the effort to work out an organizational vision statement produces six juicy rewards that will help your business ‘live long and prosper.

  1. A strategic target that helps validate the projects you chose to pursue.
  2. Clarity staff needs to help achieve your goals.
  3. Attraction of like-minded people to your company.
  4. The opportunity for employees to operate with foresight.
  5. A tool that can be used to attract customers.
  6. An end-result your people want to help pursue.

There’s more:

A vision statement creates alignment throughout your organization

A vision statement helps maintain focus on the big picture while daily distractions demand attention.

A vision statement helps prioritize efforts and drive progress toward high-value goals.

A vision statement invites your staff to join you on the journey toward shared and audacious goals.

A vision…your vision, will motivate and nourish employees with greater purpose.

A vision statement provides purpose, energy for its pursuit, and opportunities to achieve something bigger. Additionally, it’s always good to strive for something bigger than yourself, especially in tough times. Within the context of work, these are the things that make life worth living.

Does your organization have a vision statement?  How many of your employees are working for you because they want to work with like-minded people on the journey to achievement of a bigger picture?


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