Your favorite brands were born from a vision. Someone somewhere decided that they wanted to deliver a product or service to the masses and had to choose how they would do this. Taking from their list of values, they create a plan to produce the desired customer experience and they follow that vision in every part of their business. This plan is known as their vision statement.
Imagine having a vision statement that propels your business. Your customers have trust in you because of your compelling vision statement. Your employees have guidance and a feeling that they are working towards something huge! It is time to create your company’s vision statement.
What is a Vision Statement?
Your vision statement encompasses your business ideals and lays out a course to guide your business to success. It centers on your business’s reason for existing. The vision statement will clearly state your business purpose and why the business is vital to its customer’s or client’s lives or businesses.
Every successful business utilizes vision statements to guide them. Everyone in the business will then operate from this statement. The CEO plans and directs in accordance with the vision statement. Employees perform functions that align with the vision statement.
A vision statement will not only focus on the company’s goals but those of their market. This statement requires ample time to craft. This written plan maps out where the organization is headed and what the company will look like when it arrives at the summit.
Whether long or short, the vision statement should detail the company’s purpose, what they are hoping to achieve, and how they will get there. With a clear vision statement, your company stays on track, keeping priorities and the goal in sight. It takes all that your company should be and puts it into one concise, impactful statement.
Why is the Vision Statement So Important?
Without vision and a vision statement that is clear and documented the success of your company does cannot be measured. How do you know if you are headed in the right direction if you have nothing to compare your progress to? Your vision statement will help to sculpt your company culture and provide clarity to all stakeholders.
A vision statement instills your company’s vision into your employees, leaders, and the public. It tells you how to get where you are going and lets you know when you have arrived.
Creating Your Vision Statement
You will start by taking the goals and purpose of your business and use those to craft your vision statement. Look to what makes you different as you browse through your competitor’s vision statements and highlight those differences in your own.
Keep it simple. Your vision statement should be one or two sentences as you want it to be repeatable and easily understood. If you feel the need to write a longer vision statement, just make sure that you create a shorter version for the public.
List your company’s biggest, long-term goals. This is where your vision should be. Decide the impact you want to have on the world, how you want to interact with customers, and what is the culture I want for my business.
Start big and then re-work it, homing in on a more clear and concise vision statement. Don’t be afraid to be bold and daring. You want to go for the exceptional and work your business to achieve just that.
As you are writing your vision statement make sure that it focuses on the future, provides direction, is specific and relevant, values-based, memorable, and inspiring.
Using Your Vision Statement
Your vision statement is not something to be written and stashed away. Your vision statement should serve a role in your business. Help your employees to buy-in, post it on your website and around your workplace, and revise it as needed.
It should be used by leaders and employees in making decisions. Give your team tools to help them incorporate your vision statement into their everyday functions.
Examples of Winning Vision Statements
For inspiration, look at these compelling mission statements by the world’s most successful companies:
Ben & Jerry’s vision statement is short and to the point. “Making the best ice cream in the nicest way possible” isn’t too lofty and is easy to remember.
Caterpillar took a different approach with what could be akin to a run-on sentence, “Our vision is a world in which all people’s basic needs – such as shelter, clean water, sanitation, food, and reliable power – are fulfilled in an environmentally sustainable way, and a company that improves the quality of the environment and the communities where we live and work.” While it is not catchy, it covers everything the business hopes to be to the world.
Google really accomplishes its vision millions of times a day. It uses straightforward language that anyone can understand because its target market is basically everyone. Their simple vision statement reads, “To provide access to the world’s information in one click.”
LinkedIn’s vision statement to “create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce” takes two approaches, showing why their platform is necessary for this global business atmosphere. Then it values the importance of every level of the workforce and the need to connect with each member. It puts everyone on an even playing field and enables them to connect and collaborate in one place.
It is time to get started on your company’s vision statement. Do not aim for perfection on the first draft. Gather all ideas and emotional words that come to mind and start to craft an inspiring vision statement to guide your business to the pinnacle.