Vision, mission, purpose and leadership are words we constantly hear in business today. Vision is the plan for what the future of our organizations will look like, while mission refers to our daily activities to achieve these long-term goals. Our purpose is why our companies ultimately do what they do. For our companies to be successful, it’s important
to understand what a vision is, and how strong leadership helps us accomplish it.
Vision is how we think about or desire the future to look. A clear and concise (20/20) vision allows all internal and external organizational stakeholders to know where our company is trying to go.
Everyone in the organization plays a role in creating a vision. As leaders, we must empower people to be fearless, rather than scared to try things in new ways, and remain focused — never taking their eyes off the ball — to achieve the vision. This is done day by day, month by month, and year by year; there are no shortcuts.
An organization’s vision will fail if it has only been created by upper management. And with more collaborative generations, especially millennials and Gen Z, in the workplace, this is more important than ever.
Top down (autocratic) management is not effective. The key to turning a vision into reality is to empower people, encouraging a participative style, at every level of an organization: Everyone must have some type of input on the organization’s vision. People either buy in to a vision with their thoughts, emotions, blood, sweat and tears, or they will look at it as some “flavor of the month” upper management idea that will never work. Even with total buy in, it is difficult for an organization to achieve long-term growth. Without it, it’s nearly impossible.
This means we must have great leadership involved in every part of the change process. Such leaders work to ensure that the vision is achieved even as unforeseen obstacles or problems develop. Leaders may not know what these issues will be, but they know such things will happen. Moreover, they are aware that there is an opportunity behind every obstacle and a solution behind each problem.
Read more on how to achieve your organization's long-term goals through effective leadership.