Personal leadership starts with your vision, mission, and values. You can increase your speed when you know your direction. You cannot skip this part. Leadership begins with you.
To create a breakthrough, you need to think long-term. Though we want immediate for our actions, we must keep in mind that everything our actions have consequences. What we do today may impact the future.
You can transform lives. Because you can make lives better or worse for others, you need to think from a helicopter point of view while keeping your feet on the ground.
I encourage you to create a compelling vision, commit to a mission, and clarify your values. I shall discuss each briefly.
A vision is a clear and compelling picture of a future people really care about. It is a statement of where an organization, team, or individual wants to be in the future, typically within a specific time frame
Every leader dreams big. He sees a future much better than today. I think this is one reason why great leaders are often known to be stubborn. It is not that they don’t listen to people. Unfortunately, most people have a vision.
A compelling vision makes people leave their comfort zone to explore unchartered territories. Your ability to paint a clear and convincing picture of the future will encourage people to march together.
We will talk more about this in Inspire A Shared Vision.
5 Ways to Paint Your Vision
Communicating a vision is an important leadership skill. To succeed, you need to align your team toward a common goal and provide them with a sense of direction. People can only commit to what they know.
You are like Moses who has to convince people that there is a promised land. Fortunately, you are in a better position than Moses to learn how to communicate your vision.
We are going to hold a workshop on visioning exercises. In the meantime, I will share with you some ways in which leaders like you can effectively communicate their vision.
Listen and encourage feedback: Encourage your team to ask questions and provide feedback on the vision. Ensure that everyone is on the same page and understands what is expected of them.
Be clear and concise: Clearly articulate your vision in a simple and concise way so that everyone can understand it.
Use stories: Use stories to illustrate how the vision can be achieved and what it would look like once it is achieved.
Be passionate: Communicate your vision with enthusiasm and passion. This will inspire and motivate their team to work towards the vision.
Use visual aids: Visual aids such as charts, graphs, and diagrams can help leaders communicate their vision more effectively.
Tell it often: Repeat the vision regularly so that it stays fresh in everyone’s mind. Reinforce the importance of the vision and keep everyone focused on achieving it.
Articles on Vision
When leading people, I don’t really start with a discussion on vision. I think that vision statements are an important part of our leadership journey. But our first task is to find the people who we can work with.
We create a vision together. It may start with me, but the vision is shared.
Later, I will write a series on this. In the meantime, I offer you the following ideas.
A mission is a statement that defines the purpose and core focus of an organization or individual. A mission statement is short and concise so it can easily be communicated to stakeholders, employees, customers, and the general public.
Your mission explains your existence today. You are here and now because of your mission.
It tells what a leader must do at a given moment. I say that a mission is often more important than a leader. As long as people believe in the mission, they’ll follow leaders. And they will stick to the mission even when the leader is gone.
If your vision is your destination, your mission is what you do every day.
You can communicate your mission the same we you communicate your vision. I also conduct workshops on creating mission statements and making them real to people. Perhaps, I will produce some videos in the future to help you.
3 Ways to Communicate Your Mission
Here are some other things you, the leader, can do to communicate your mission.
Include your mission in your branding. You want everyone to see it each day. Place it on your website, social media profiles, and marketing collaterals. Talk about it in your newsletter and company events.
Include it in your training and development. Remember that your mission is about the here and now. Let every training program become a fulfillment of your mission.
Make your employees advocates of your mission. Engage your employees so they become the storytellers and evangelists of your mission.
Articles on Mission
I will soon be writing a series of articles dedicated to helping leaders write, then communicate their mission statements. Until then, I like to offer you the following ideas.
Values are a set of beliefs and principles that guide your leadership. You must be clear about your beliefs, for they shape your decisions.
You will lead people with the same values as you. You must therefore listen to your voice before you listen to others. You need to know who you are.
Then, find out what others value too to agree on shared values.
Some organizations have a set of Core Values, while others have Principles.
4 Ways to Promote Your Values
Communicating values helps to create a shared understanding of the guiding principles that guide decision-making and behavior within an organization.
Here are some ways in which managers can effectively communicate values:
Lead by example: Model the values you want to see in employees. Demonstrate the values in your own behavior and decision-making, so that employees can see how they are put into practice.
Incorporate values into company policies and procedures: Ensure that employees understand the importance of the values and how they are applied in the workplace.
Provide training and development: You can provide training and development opportunities that reinforce the importance of the values and how they are applied in the workplace. This ensures that employees understand the values and feel confident in applying them.
Recognize and reward behavior that aligns with values: Employee achieves must reflect the values of the organization. Recognize and reward behavior that aligns with the values, to reinforce their importance and encourage others to model the same behavior.
Articles on Values
I have written many articles on values. It is the heart of my Culture Shaping Program. Explore these articles.
I understand that many people are confused about the role of vision, mission, and values in organizations. When I meet clients to talk about their leadership training needs, I often ask for the vision, mission, and values.
Six of ten times, I don’t get an answer at once. They remember that it is on their website, but they don’t know what it is.
I also observed that in many cases, the vision statement sounds like an objective. And the mission statement sounds like a pipe dream. The values are often the acronym of the organization’s acronym too. It seems they don’t give much thought to the organization’s strategic direction.
Anyhoo. If you have questions, feel free to contact me.
Below are some of the frequently asked questions.