A solid strategy is critical to succeed in business and as a leader. The first step in creating a working strategy is to establish a company vision. Just as your strategy explains and projects success within the given market, your company’s vision serves as the engine that drives that strategy, and, ultimately, the company’s overall success. Vision is the launching point from which all other aspects will evolve, so make sure your vision is both tangible and realistic.
First, you must articulate your company’s vision in a realistic statement of aspiration based on what you are today and where you see your company in the future. Be practical, specific, and targeted to ensure you generate the most value from your enterprise. Second, make sure to create a time frame around the vision statement. This is important because you want to identify long-term and short-term goals, strategies, and tactics. And, third, create a measurable vision that enables you to track your progress.
Let’s look at some examples:
Bad Vision: To be the biggest automotive parts company in the world. This statement is far too vague (“biggest in the world”) What is your definition of the “biggest”? Is it sales? Number of employees? Number of locations? By when should this happen? And how does any of that contribute to bringing unique value to your customers?
Good Vision: To be the highest revenue provider of engines and drive trains for the high-performance automotive market in the U.S. within 10 years. This statement is practical and specific, and provides focus within a specific time frame. It is a long-term goal that you can measure. Aim for this type of vision statement.
While a goal of being the ‘biggest and best’ might sound optimal, such language is intangible and serves no purpose. One of the problems we often face in business is that the word vision has connotations of amorphousness or outrageousness. Vague visions are useless in day-to-day business activities, and everyone knows that visions that are ridiculous in scope are impossible to carry out. Either way, such visions are not worth the paper they are printed on or the breath used to recite them.
Make your company’s vision something worthwhile that will serve your business rather than hinder its growth. Be realistic, be specific, and keep long- and short-term goals in mind, and you will create a platform for exponential achievement.
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