A vision is meaningful when tied down to a concrete set of actions
Why a vision makes sense
In conversation
Bob: Hey Walter! Have you received an invitation to attend some sort of 'development' session?
Walter: You mean the 'Vision development' session?
Bob: Ya... whatever! The one the new boss sent.
Walter: Yup! I did. You attending?
Bob: Hmm... not quite sure I want to. Have a fire to settle with one of our big clients. That takes priority. Besides what's in this for me, anyway?
Walter: Why do you feel the client's meeting is more important?
Bob: Well he isn't exactly happy with our performance on delivery. He's escalated the issue a couple of times. If we don't take swift action, we'll lose him to competition. Can't afford that can we? Won't do me any good when my performance is reviewed, nor does it benefit the company.
Walter: But Bob, just think about it. Isn't that exactly why we ought to attend this session? It will enable us to convince our customers about our vision, and why they should trust us, and stick with us.
Bob: Okay. Let me think about it Walter. But what is a vision anyway?
Sounds familiar? The concept of a vision is often vague and at times difficult to understand. However, its importance cannot be emphasized enough.
One of our clients manufacturing hardware in the south of India, was desperately trying to maintain their current global market position. But they were struggling, and in the world of technology, you always need to be a step-ahead of competition. There is no time to allow for new technologies to even mature. Before you know it, something better is already out there. So how does one survive?
To stay ahead of competition and grow, one needs a determined, clear, and actionable, vision.
A 'Vision', no matter how fancy it sounds, is meaningful when tied down to a concrete set of actions. It is the backbone for concrete action and gives meaning to your job. Actions must be defined, with targets for results. Decisions should be timely, clear, meaningful, and obvious. A vision ought to be approached with such a mindset. Else, it looses its purpose.
Now to induce people in an organization to share that vision and live for it, it has to agree with their personal values and aspirations. When a corporate vision is in synch with the vision of its people, it enables them to decide for themselves. It helps them decide how much they wish to contribute and how far are they willing to go for it. Whether stated publicly or not, people need a reason to do their job well. Money and appreciation are not enough and a good vision can give them that reason.
Points to ponder:
  • Ask yourself - What is my personal vision? Do I understand my company's vision? Does it match mine? Am I chasing the same dream?
  • Think of the opportunities and changes you would like to see in your organization. Ensure you participate in building that future, that vision. As a vision is nothing more than a reflection of the people who help build it.
  • What change must you embrace, to achieve your ambitious goals? For example, would you rather be more client-oriented or technology-oriented? Would you rather focus on increasing employee productivity or quality?
Mar 2015