You cannot create a statement for something that doesn’t exist. This is the reason 95% of vision statements start with the utterly revolting words “we exist to challenge the status quo”.
Really? No you don’t. You exist to conform to the status quo, make some money and hopefully not become obsolete before you hit retirement age. That’s your vision. Be honest.
If it’s not. If you really do want a vision statement that actually stands for something, you have to actually stand for something:
- Perhaps you genuinely are doing things so differently that it truly could turn the market on its head – brilliant. Do that first and then write your vision statement.
- Perhaps you exist to create a great life for your employees. Maybe the CEO earns no more than the hardworking women and men around her, because the company believes in always putting the team first. Perhaps employees are given shares, masses of flexibility and a culture where everyone is celebrated for being themselves… Brilliant. Do all that, then write your vision statement.
- Perhaps you support a charity. I don’t mean do an annual fun run, but that you have actually placed the future of that charity front and centre of your operations, committing a significant percentage of resources to helping them achieve their aims. Amazing. Do that then write your vision statement.
You see vision statements are not about the statements. They’re about the vision. If your vision is to make money for the shareholders. That’s fine. The economy needs businesses like yours. It really does. But be honest about it. Forget the lofty messaging and get out there and make some more cash.
But if your vision is to make a change that others can really buy into, prove it first. The statement will write itself.
See you next time.