Describing your vision is one of the most important things when building and scaling a business. Because without describing your vision it will be difficult to choose direction and determine what your priorities are. So in today’s article we will take a better look at describing your vision and setting yourself up for success!
What is a vision?
Your vision is basically your dream of where, what or who you want your company to become at a certain point in time.
To paraphrase one of my favourite sayings – if you don’t know where you are going, it does not matter in which direction you start walking.
This reminds us of the importance of having a clear vision for our lives and businesses. Yet, many entrepreneurs forget the crucial aspect of describing your vision.
Don’t confuse why with vision
Vision and Why statements are topics that have been widely discussed in books, blogs, and articles. However, people often confuse the two. Let’s keep it simple and understand the key differences.
Vision is about who, where or what you want your company to become. It’s like setting a long-term goal and creating a roadmap to get there.
The vision should motivate yourself and others and provide direction for your business over a span of five to ten years. It sets the tone and aligns everyone in the company, even your clients, towards a common purpose.
Whereas the Why statement is about why your company exists. Made seriously popular by Simon Sinek in his book ‘Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action‘.
It represents your passion, purpose, or cause. Your mission statement should be simple and meaningful, something that people can easily identify with and find inspiring. It serves as a reminder of the impact they make through their work or by being part of your business.
Create an effective vision
To create an effective vision, you should consider a few essential points:
Core focus of your company
Identify the central objective of your company. And define what your core focus is.
Understand what sets your company apart from others.
Define where you want your company to be in five to ten years.
Set a short-term goal to move closer to your vision.
Having a clear Vision and Why is crucial for team alignment. It helps everyone understand the purpose of their work and motivates them, especially during challenging times. When people have a clear reason why they are working, they are more engaged and driven to succeed.
Incorporating the vision and why into the company’s culture is essential. By aligning everyone with your vision, the company can achieve remarkable success.
Even when you don’t have or want any employees, it will be important to set your priorities and simplify decision making.
Remember, the Why sets the inspirational tone and mindset for the Vision. When people understand the “why” behind their work, they are more likely to invest themselves wholeheartedly.
Vision examples from major brands
Okay so enough talk, let’s dive into some examples from major companies before defining yours!
Concept focused vision examples
Google: ‘To provide access to the world’s information in one click.’
Apple: ‘To make a contribution to the world by making tools for the mind that advance humankind.’
Microsoft: ‘Empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.’
Coca-Cola: ‘To refresh the world in mind, body, and spirit. To inspire moments of optimism and happiness through our brands and actions.’
Nike: ‘To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. *If you have a body, you are an athlete.’
Disney: ‘To entertain, inform, and inspire people around the globe through the power of unparalleled storytelling.’
Starbucks: ‘To inspire and nurture the human spirit—one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.’
Facebook: ‘To give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.’
Walmart: ‘To save people money so they can live better.’
Sony: ‘To be a company that inspires and fulfills your curiosity.’
BMW: ‘To be the most successful premium car manufacturer in the industry.’
Visa: ‘To be the best way to pay and be paid for everyone, everywhere.’
General Electric (GE): ‘To invent the next industrial era, to build, move, power, and cure the world.’
Unilever: ‘To make sustainable living commonplace.’
Quality focused vision examples
Amazon: ‘To be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.’
FedEx: ‘To operate outstanding, worldwide, express transportation and logistics services, and to do it more efficiently than any competitor—safely, responsibly, and profitably.’
IBM: ‘To be the world’s most successful and important information technology company. Making a difference in the world through our business solutions, research, and technology.’
McDonald’s: ‘To be the best quick-service restaurant experience. Being the best means providing outstanding quality, service, cleanliness, and value, so that we make every customer in every restaurant smile.’
Tesla: ‘To create the most compelling car company of the 21st century by driving the world’s transition to electric vehicles.’
As you can see, these are all pretty bold statements and the majority of decisions taken by these companies make a lot of sense if you read their vision.
When we started the club our vision and reasons were not much more than making some friends and meeting potential clients for our marketing services.
However our vision has evolved over the years and can now be best described as to bring people closer in a digital world where personal connections are more important than ever and creating opportunities for local businesses on the French Riviera.
How we currently do this is by organising weekly in-person events with a positive welcoming atmosphere where you immediately feel comfortable and building bridges to facilitate business growth.
We do this because we don’t want people to feel lonely or lost and we want to be part of entrepreneurs their success journey.
This might not be the best vision, mission and why statement compared to many other businesses but that does not matter at all. It is important to us and makes us happy doing so every day.
Law of attraction, at least my take on it
The amazing thing is that you will attract people that align with your vision and reasons to do what you do. Many would describe this as manifesting.
And it works because you start making choices based on who you want to be instead of chasing every lead or opportunity that could distract you from your long term goals. But also because others know what to expect from you.
If you do everything, no one will know when to call you. Trust me on this one!
Questions to define your vision
Here are some questions to help you start defining and describing your vision, mission and why statement.
Vision Statement Questions
a. What do you envision your organisation becoming in the future?
b. What are the long-term goals you want to achieve?
c. How do you see your company making a positive impact on the world?
d. What is the ultimate purpose of your company’s existence?
e. How would success look like for your organisation in 5 to 10 years?
f. What values and principles will guide your organisation’s growth?
Mission Statement Questions
a. Why does your organisation exist? What drives it to operate every day?
b. What problems or needs does your organisation aim to address or fulfill?
c. How do you intend to make a difference in the lives of your customers or the community?
d. What unique strengths or resources does your organisation bring to achieve its purpose?
e. How does your company define its responsibility to its stakeholders (customers, employees, society, etc.)?
a. What motivates you as a leader or founder to run this company?
b. What personal values and beliefs align with the organisation’s mission?
c. How does your organisation’s purpose resonate with your team members?
d. In what ways does your organisation’s purpose inspire passion and dedication in its employees?
e. How can your organisation’s purpose guide decision-making and strategic planning?
a. What positive change do you want your organisation to bring to the world?
b. How will your organisation’s products or services enhance the lives of its customers?
c. In what ways will your organisation contribute to the betterment of society or the environment?
d. How will you measure and track the impact of your company’s actions?
e. Can you envision the legacy your organisation will leave behind?
a. How do you ensure that your team members are aligned with the organisation’s vision and mission?
b. What steps can you take to foster a sense of purpose and commitment among your employees?
c. How can you communicate the vision and mission clearly and consistently throughout the organisation?
d. How do you handle challenges or conflicts that arise when aligning with the vision and mission?
e. How can your organisation’s culture reinforce the importance of its vision and mission?
Forget past failures
My general advice when describing your vision is to not take into consideration where you are right now, what others might think of you or past ‘failures’.
Building and scaling a business is an incredible journey with many ups- and downs. Let the past be the past and forgive yourself for any mistakes or wrong decisions.
There is literally nothing that you can do to change the past. Learn from your experience and decide on your future actions to change the situation.
Correctly defining and describing your vision is not always easy to be honest. But it is worth spending time on this subject as it will help you develop your business.
On the other hand, keep in mind that your vision for the company can evolve as your business grows. So do not worry too much about finding the ‘perfect’ vision for the upcoming thirty years.
And lastly as a reminder, the vision is your dream for the company in 5-10 years from now and the Why inspires everyone to get there!
Feel free to send us a message if you need any help describing your vision – we would be happy to help! And of course, don’t forget to sign up as a business member to unlock free access to weekly events and tools to grow your business.