In last week’s blog we mentioned briefly the idea that people are motivated by images, things they can see in their minds. That must have resonated with some people, because a number of you commented or emailed me (thanks, by the way). The more I think about that idea, the more I think it’s one of the keys to leadership. If people are motivated by images, isn’t it then the responsibility of the leader to create those images that are going to drive productivity, change, success, etc?
I think it is. And I think creating that vision is really hard. Most organizations have a mission statement. It’s usually something about providing great service, being a great place to work, having great employees, and so on. And when we ask people about their vision for the organization, they quite often reference the mission statement and that kind of thing. But does that really create a picture in your people’s heads? Is that really a vision?
There’s a big difference between a mission statement and a vision. The dictionary definition of vision is “The faculty of sight; eyesight; Something that is or has been seen” (italics mine). The last part is exactly what’s wrong with most companies’ vision. You can’t see it.
Think about your vision. I’d suggest you try and draw it. That maybe sounds corny, but don’t worry about the quality of your artwork. Just see if you can draw your vision for your business. If you can, great. If you can’t, that means you can’t picture what your future looks like. If you can’t see it, how can anyone else?
What have you done to create & communicate your vision? Can you draw it? If you’re not comfortable with your vision, maybe you need to just think “baby steps”. Find a vision setting process that works for you (we’ve helped organizations and individuals work through a 5-step vision setting process – I’d be happy to share). Just remember: You are the leader. You can’t abdicate vision setting to someone else. It’s your responsibility. And when you get it right, it will change your world.