Every successful company has a vision statement. Vision and business go hand in hand. The best entrepreneurs are the ones who can set an audacious goal, inspire talented people to pursue it with them, and build a business that achieves that vision and makes a lasting impact.
In 2016, two Canadian entrepreneurs, Cameron Herold and Brian Scudamore, inspired me to craft a detailed written vision for where my company would be in 2020, often referred to as a Vivid Vision or Painted Picture. Our Vivid Vision 2020 has been the overarching roadmap for the past three years of our operations and development. The vision intentionally shared the why and the what, but not the how. That was up to our team.
With just three months to go, we are we are on track to achieve most of the ambitious goals set in our Vivid Vision and I am working on the next plan for 2023.
In writing and executing on this Vivid Vision, I have seen any company, regardless of industry or size, can benefit from this process. Here's why:
It provides clarity
A vision statement is an important, but it is more of a broad guide, like a compass pointing you in the correct direction as you lead the business. A Painted Picture or Vivid Vision is far more specific, it shows employees what the company will look and feel like at a future date.
Writing a Vivid Vision requires leaders to contemplate exactly what business they want to build. How many employees do you want to have, and in which markets? What is the exact revenue goal you want to hit? Getting even more granular: if you want to be an award-winning company, which awards do you specifically want to win?
These questions turn your vision and values into a specific plan with measurables that become annual and quarterly priorities. It sets a very clear end point.
It unifies your team
We're constantly hiring at Acceleration Partners, and part of our onboarding process is for prospects and new employees to read the Vivid Vision. I walk through the document with each new employee personally, allowing them to ask questions about the document and build understanding of where we are headed. Conversely, if it doesn't really excite them, we probably aren't the right place for them to work.
Employees today, especially millennials, want to understand how they can contribute at a higher level. As companies grow, it's important for employees to understand how their day to day work makes an impact on the long-term future of the business. Our Vivid Vision addresses this need, providing a clear picture for employees of what the company is striving to become and how their role moves the company forward, giving them a connection to the greater strategy of the business.
When your employees have a clear understanding of where the company is going, how their work affects that progress, and what specifically they need to do each day to advance the company toward its goals., it drives high engagement across your organization.
It creates public accountability
It's no surprise that setting goals leads to better results--it's hard to achieve something without setting out to do it intentionally. But even more effective than just setting a goal is sharing it: a study by Dominican University's Dr. Gail Mathews found that people who send their goals to their friends and regularly report on their progress hit those goals 76 percent of the time.
Our Vivid Vision follows this example by providing a record of a company's specific future goals. We share it openly because we want to be held accountable to our goals and we aren't worried about the competition, if they are focused on what we are doing, they aren't setting their own path. We have used the document as a clear measuring stick for our progress over the past three years and have adjusted whenever things have moved off course.
Vivid Vision is more than just an aspiration--it's a clear, specific vision for exactly what company you and your team are trying to build.