Will You Realize Your Vision in 2017?

by Frank L. Williams

At its heart, leadership is about two things: vision and influence. As a leader, you are charged with leveraging your influence to rally your team around a positive vision for your organization’s future. 

First, let’s discuss influence. Influence is not about your position or title. It’s not about where you sit on an organizational chart. Influence is about credibility. In order to have true influence, the people on your team have to respect your character and trust that you have their best interests at heart. As author John C. Maxwell says, influence must be earned.

Assuming you have earned your team’s trust and respect, you can leverage that influence to rally them around a common, shared vision for your organization.

What should that vision look like?

Your vision should be bold and compelling. People don’t get excited about average ideas. President John F. Kennedy rallied a nation around a bold idea with this simple, clear challenge on May 25, 1961: “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth.” 

Your vision must be realistic. While your vision must be bold and compelling enough to stretch the imagination of those on your team, it must also be attainable. Your team members must know that there is a chance to succeed if they push themselves and get beyond their comfort zones.

Your vision must be positive and uplifting. People don’t rally around negativity. As Paul Harvey said, “I’ve never seen a monument erected to a pessimist.”

Your vision should paint a clear picture in the minds of your team. They should be able to see the outcome in their mind’s eye. This is not only dependent upon the substance of your vision, but also on your ability to communicate your vision in a way that has meaning to those on your team. 

Your vision must be relevant. Your vision must be meaningful to those charged with making it become a reality. How will your team members benefit if they bring your idea to fruition? 

Your vision must be clear. Both the substance of your vision and the manner in which you communicate it must be clear and easily understood. This applies to not only the desired outcome, but to the part each team member is expected to play in making it happen.

Do you have a clear vision for your organization? If so, you need to know whether your team members understand and are on board with that vision. You need to have a clear strategy and plan of action to consistently communicate your vision to those charged with making it happen. A vision without a strategy is only a dream, and a strategy without goals and deadlines is only a wish list.

Drop us a line if you’d like to discuss how Pioneer Strategies can help you refine your vision and clearly communicate it to your team members and other key stakeholders.

Frank L. Williams

Frank is the founder and president of Pioneer Strategies.