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People start businesses for a purpose. These entrepreneurs will create a product or service to meet an unmet need.
Sometimes, a business owner has a passion for creating innovative products.
Either way, it is important to know what the goal is.
A business should be able to articulate what it is trying to achieve and the basic purpose of its existence.
Vision Statements Are Important
Successful organizations understand the importance of investing the time and energy to define their vision, mission, and values.
This important step helps to provide long-term direction for employees and serves as a decision-making tool for leadership.
For instance, the management team may contemplate additions or changes to the business model. In this instance, the team should always ask, “does this decision align with our vision”?
A vision statement supersedes the notion that organizations simply exist to make a profit.
An articulate vision focuses on identifying the customers that will be served and investing in a long-term approach to serving that customer base.
Effective leadership thinks and strategizes for the future based on customer requirements and market conditions.
“Visionary leaders create mental and verbal pictures of desirable
future states and share these visions with their organizational
partners, including customers, suppliers, and employees.”
The Management and Control of Quality
What Is a Vision Statement?
A Vision Statement is simply a written document that describes where an organization is going and what it will look like when it gets there.
It describes what the company is striving for and what it hopes to achieve. Its goal is to articulate the characteristics that influence the organization’s strategy.
This statement and philosophy are what give an organization its direction and focus.
Why Is A Vision Statement Important?
Organizations that don’t have a clear, articulate vision have the potential to veer off course and lose focus of their goals and priorities.
For employees to truly partner with a business and help them achieve their strategic goals, they need to understand why they are there and what they are trying to achieve.
For example, a grocery store may begin focusing on the flower and gift market and put so much effort into that, that they lose sight of their main business – groceries.
This can result in neglecting those things that would enhance and grow their core business.
A defined vision statement could possibly be the tool to help them stay focused on key business priorities.
Example Vision Statements
Large and small organizations alike invest time and resources into developing Vision, Mission, and Values statements. Here are some sample vision statements:
“We will be an outstanding company by exceeding customer expectations through empowered people guided by shared values.”
“To become a premier electronics company providing world leadership in digital solutions for the networked society – a society transformed by personalized electronics, all speaking the same digital language, all able to communicate anytime, anywhere.”
”Be the best and continuously improve.”
“St. Louis Children’s Hospital will be the hallmark for quality pediatric care within our region, as well as nationally and internationally. As the flagship for a growing, integrated pediatric healthcare network, we will lead the development of innovative, cost-effective approaches in prevention, primary care, and specialty services, with the ultimate goal of improving the health of all children.”
St. Louis Children’s Hospital
As you can see from these examples, these organizations speak to a future state. They articulate what the organization will be and works diligently to achieve that goal.
How To Create A Vision Statement
Defining your organization’s vision, mission, and values statements should be the first step in the strategic planning process.
While this process can be a time investment, it is a critical step in achieving long-term success.
For instance, the strategic planning process begins with a conversation about the organization’s goals and strives to articulate those goals in a written statement.
Once the Vision, mission, and values statement is developed, it is important to share it with employees and customers. Then, find creative ways to display it publicly and give it a prominent spot on your business website.
This step communicates its value and the organization’s commitment to achieving it.
Reasons To Write A Vision Statement
Everyone is on the same page. When management and employees understand why the organization exists, they can rally around its purpose and help to achieve that end.
Supports the budgeting process. An articulate vision will support the budgeting process by helping decision-makers focus on those things that the organization is striving to achieve.
Gives employees a purpose. We are all on this earth for a purpose, and when employees understand that purpose, they work hard to help achieve it and take pride in what they do.
Many small businesses neglect this very important step when they begin their start-up. However, they quickly learn that without clear direction, it is easy to lose focus and end up somewhere that no one planned to be.
If you can’t articulate your vision, today might be the day to gather your team and figure it out!
Has your organization gone through the process of creating a vision statement?
If you want to learn more, there is a great book, Start with the Vision: Six Steps to Effectively Plan, Create Solutions, and Take Action, that can help you in your planning efforts!