I was listening to this (old) TED Talk from Vineet Nayar about “Employees first, customers second”. Mostly it is about the importance to put your “own people” first, before you please others. He talks from a business perspective, but one of his last sentences caught me and made me think this topic further. He is talking about making the Vision of your company so experienceable, that it becomes the ambition of your employees, so they make it their pursuit to turn it into reality. Now don’t just look at the business side of this “journey”. This step-by-step “guide” also makes a lot of sense in someones personal life. Let me explain …
Let’s start with the Vision
A Vision is basically a formal way of writing down or communicating goals and commitments for the future, so others can understand it. Everything written in this short statement (usually 1-3 sentences) aligns with your aspirations and engagements. In business it seems easy, to create a vision for your own company. It is one of the first things you do, even before you’re officially opening your business. Writing down some words, that look good on your website and make everything look professional. – How hard can it be, right?
But what makes a Vision tangible? What is a good Vision for a company? It is a process for sure. Let me tell you, writing down a company’s Vision in a couple of minutes or hours is not the right way to do it. Your company doesn’t just contain of some nice words and promises that make your services and products look good. Your people, your (company’s-)character, your credibility, your stakeholders, etc. make your company’s vision complete. That is what I meant when I said that it’s a process. Take all the ingredients, that you “touch” throughout your day-to-day-business, look at them very closely and make the whole puzzle fit in one frame.
Here is a step-by-step-guide how to create a good vision-statement for your company with some examples of well-known brands. From my experience of consulting many brands (bigger and small ones), the most efficient way to create a vision statement for your company is, to NOT DO IT ALONE. Get some professional help and let good branding-people help you! They are experts for a reason. They can put some spotlights on your business, like nobody else – you will be surprised how many characteristics they are able to enumerate only by the fact, that they got to know your company in a very short period of time. I know somebody who has got you covered 😉
What about a personal Vision? What’s your vision for your life?
Let’s take a closer look on the other side – the personal aspect of creating a vision-statement for yourself. If you want to create a Vision, or a “however_many_years-plan” or whatsoever, get all the ingredients together and start defining your goals realistically. Write down your personal wishes, your passions, your beliefs, your career goals, your assets (also the financial ones), your strengths, your weaknesses and be sincere with all of the above. Make sure you include your values too. For example: “What do you stand for?”, “What difference do you want to make?”, etc. Don’t try to fool yourself or make some things up, just to make it easier. You see, as in business-related Vision-Statements, it is not just about the product (personal would be for example: your career), but it is the whole package, you’ll be looking at.
Think big, right? That’s what they say. But do you know how big is too big for you? Do you know how hight the ladder can be for you to climb it? Well, this is not only in your own hands. There are so many aspects, that you need to consider. A vision is supposed to be written down for the long-term, it is a driver of your motivation and a pathway to keep going on the right track. This specific statement provides you with concrete and actionable steps that help you move forward with your goals. It helps you to not loose your goals out of sight. A personal Vision statement gives you a feeling of direction and commitment and reminds you of where you want to be when you get distracted.
So with that said, I hope it is more clear now, why it is important to be honest with yourself. Don’t put stones and rocks along the way and hope that God will take them away. You will stumble over your own traps if you don’t watch out.
To be continued ….. –> Ambition
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