Your Vision which Pulls People Along
If you are to create and build a (potentially large) self-sustaining business that is a great fit for the time we live in, you must have a vision.
A strong vision is something which you want for your business and people can hang on to. In good times and bad, people like to feel well led and to believe in something. There is going to be some work activities which people won’t like doing but will happily roll their sleeves up if they can see it relates to helping to build a great business.
All of us will have likely experienced personally creating something which brings us joy. We want the end result and realise there are going to be some things we have to do which we may not like doing to reach the outcome we want.
People, by which I mean; employees, directors, suppliers and other stakeholders will use and believe in your business vision if it’s well thought through.
Difference between a Mission and a Vision
I think there is a difference between an organisations mission and vision. A vision answers one of the biggest questions of all. And that question is “Where do You Want to Be and What do You Want” A Mission statements tends to define the present state of a business. What does your business do, who does it do it for and how do you do it?
The important thing to remember about your organisation is that it’s not static, it moves forward as the world moves forward, things change, competition changes, technology changes, society changes, governments change and so on.
In a way, your vision is about the future state that you want. The reason why your business exists, the reason why your staff will roll their sleeve’s up and go the extra mile. Your vision is both aspirational and inspirational.
Does my vision have to be based on what my business does now?
This is an interesting question and the answer is not as straightforward as you might think. In a perfect world we would decide on a business, perhaps something we love or think there’s a demand for and then create it.
The thing is though, we don’t live in a perfect world. If anything, the world in general and businesses are very far from perfect. From a practical standpoint, it may be easier to build our great business from what we already have. Many companies do just that but there are just as many that move far away from their humble beginnings.
Take Lammot DuPont for example, they started by developing a way to manufacture black gum cheaper and improve it to produce a stronger explosive blast. Its business is now involved in polymer adhesives, insecticides and fire extinguishers.
Nokia started as a paper mill before moving into cables and then mobile phones.
What is your vision?