Vision: Importance of Vision Statement in a Business

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The greatest responsibility for the entrepreneur or business leader is to midwife a clear and shared vision for the company and to get commitment to and vigorous pursuit of that vision. Research has shown that businesses that perform well over a long period had their leaders instill a compelling vision into the company while the company was relatively small.

So, why is a vision important to business?

The corporate vision plays four very important roles:

It provides a context for strategic and tactical decisions. Corporate vision provides a context within which people at all levels can make decisions. A shared vision is like having a compass and distant destination in the mountain. If you give a group of people a destination point and then turn them loose in the mountains to reach that destination, they will probably figure out a way to get there. They may encounter obstacles and bad turns along the way, but with the general direction of the compass, a clear end goal and the belief that they are working towards a worthy destination, they will probably reach the target

Corporate vision forms that basis for extraordinary human effort. People respond to values, ideals, dreams and exhilarating challenges.It is human nature. People will often exert extraordinary effort in an effort to live up to the ideals of the organisation, peer group or society if they share those ideals and consider them worthy. Managers who build their organisations based on a set of worthy values, meaningful purpose and a compelling mission are laying the ground work for extraordinary human effort.

Shared vision creates cohesion, teamwork and community. Having very clear shared goals and underlying set of principles and values hold the team together. Without a shared vision, any organisation can easily degenerate into factions, disparate agendas, turf wars, empire building and petty politics become prevalent; destructive infighting saps people’s energies rather than working for a common aim and towards strengthening the entire organisation. It becomes impossible to maintain a strong and positive sense of community.

Vision enables the business to evolve past dependence on a few key individuals. In the early phases of an organisation, a company’s vision comes directly from its early leaders; it’s very much their personal vision. To remain healthy through multiple generations, however a company must progress past excessive dependence on one or a few key individuals. The vision must become shared as a community and become identified primarily with the organisation rather than with certain individuals running the organisation. The vision must actually transcend the founders.

No strategy is possible without first setting a vision. Visionary leaders will thus strive to catalyze a vision which is property of the entire enterprise and instill it in such a way that it remains strong and intact well after the leader departs from daily operations.

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