A vision is a clear mental picture of the desired future. When a company founder or senior manager creates a vision for the future, they are not just making a wish. They are providing a guide for all the companies plans and a powerful inspiration for everyone to take action.
Here are some vision statements from notable companies:
“IKEA’s vision is to create a better everyday life for many people.”
“The vision of Tesla is to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”
“TED’s vision us to create ideas.”
“The Alzheimer’s Association envisions a world without Alzheimer’s disease.”
Vision statements have to do with the future. Customers don’t need them. It is the employees of the organisation who need them for inspiration and direction. A mission statement may communicate the purpose of an organisation, but a vision statement pictures a future in which that purpose has been achieved.
A vision gives people direction, and successful company founders or CEOs are usually good at envisioning the future they want to create and sharing that vision with others. They are expected to ensure that all the companies efforts are dedicated to fulfilling their vision. They are also expected to get their employees to understand and share in the same vision. CEOs cannot fulfil their vision without the help of their employees.
Employees who find their company vision meaningful are more engaged and more productive. Corporate leaders who can capture their aspirations and communicate them well with their staff will have contributed to the success of their organisation.
Sometimes companies will create a vision and hang it somewhere in the office. Before long, it becomes like a piece of furniture or an old painting that no one thinks about. It is impossible to see a vision if it is not communicated often and used often. While crafting a vision, come up with strategies to ensure that it remains on the forefront and that it guides all activities. Align your vision with your mission, purpose, goals, and values.
Consider using the vision to guide staff performance reviews.
Vision statements are concise, usually no more than a sentence. A shorter statement is more memorable. It quickly captures all your most audacious goals in one sentence. This makes it easy to remember and to execute. A short and simple vision will be easier for employees to understand and implement.
For a vision to inspire people to action, it cannot be too generic and realistic. Don’t be too shy to create more audacious, daring vision statement. Microsoft’s initial vision to see a personal computer on every desk running Microsoft software was bold enough to inspire the team. No doubt the employees were intrigued by the prospect of world combination.
A good vision statement captures the things that make your company different from others. A good question to discuss during the visioning process is ‘What is so special about us?’ Picture your organisation in the next ten years.
Besides inspiration, a common vision brings people together by giving them a feeling of belonging and a common identity. To be successful, an organisation needs a team that is fully committed to achieving the desired future.