Vision: The Missing Link

Jul 24, 2014 | Organizational Behavior

Chain with question mark link

Have you ever said things like:
Why can’t there just be two of me?!
I wish I could do it myself.
I don’t have time to train other people to do what I do.

The interesting thing about each of these statements is that they are entirely and exclusively focused on the present. They are not forward-thinking. This “right here, right now” way of leading and managing is shallow and even self-centered. This view sees people as more of a hindrance than a help. What does this viewpoint need? Vision.

Vision looks past the difficulty of the present and makes choices that will positively affect the future of your company. Come down to earth with me.

Odds are your vision statement is buried deep within the handbook and is rarely, if ever, mentioned. Even if you know the vision, your employees probably do not. If they do, they might not understand how it was created or even what it means. Casting it well is one of the most important things you can do for your employees. Below are practical ways to cast or recast a vision for your employees.

Hold a meeting to go over the vision statement.

I know it sounds tedious, but it’s important that you work through each word and phrase of your vision. Your staff should be able to explain this to someone who has never heard of your company.

Tell the story of how your company got started.

You may give your story somewhere on your website, but it might be a romanticized version of what really happened. In your employee welcome packet, include a detailed description of your company’s origins and the role it plays in the current vision. This way, every staff member knows where he fits as a teammate and in the history of the company.

Meet with individual employees to talk about their personal visions.

This may be the most vital step when it comes to team unity and problem-solving. Your organization is made up of individuals. How are you getting them all on board with your vision? I believe the best way is to find out what they are personally passionate about and connect that to the vision. You don’t need me to show you research to know that people work best when they feel connected to and passionate about what they are doing.

If employees relate to the business’ vision, they will be natural problem-solvers and walking billboards for your industry.

Here are some additional tips for communicating your corporate vision:

  • Put your vision statement on a sign and hang it in a common area.
  • Embed it into your company-wide email signature.
  • When a new idea is brought up in a meeting, ask if it fits within the parameters of the vision statement. Stay true to your roots.

Do you have other vision-related ideas? Leave a comment below!

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