It’s surprising how often business owner operate without a clear company vision, or neglect the one they have. Nine times out of ten, when a business fails it is because they either didn’t have a solid company vision or they didn’t follow it. If you’re a young business owner, be a visionary, and never let your vision drop from your sight.
Coming up with a company vision shouldn’t be a daunting task. Business owners that operate without a vision are always on the edge of their seat – any change in the market could completely devalue all the work they’ve done and send their business into the ground. A company with a vision has two distinct advantages:
– They’re always working on the long-view. The setbacks and market conditions of today can be easily absorbed by a business with long-term market development strategies, because the day-to-day profitability is not the be-all-and-end-all, it’s just a means to an end.
– A bold, solid company vision is contagious. If you know your business is going places, then that enthusiasm and anticipation will spread to your partners, employees and customers. A strategically sound, long-term business strategy is inspiring to everyone involved, which means they will work harder, smarter and with more loyalty than they would for someone without it.
There are three pillars to making your company vision work for you: alignment, long-term goals and short-term goals.
– Alignment: Everybody with a stake needs to believe in your vision. If you have purely selfish goals that seek to benefit you personally at the expense of your partners, employees and customers, your vision is flawed.
– Long-term goals: Employees that feel like the doing the same thing every day and their work creates no long-term beneficial results will be staring at the clock. People are much more prepared to rally around and get excited about the long-term than about day-to-day tasks, no matter how necessary.
– Short-term goals: The long-term can also appear very hypothetical. Long-term initiatives can sound great, but the only way to build momentum and confidence is to successfully execute short-term goals.
So where do you want to be next year? In three years? Five? Ten? It can be hard to look that far ahead, but the future is a lot sooner than you think. You are reminded of it every time you look in your rear-view mirror: objects are closer than they appear. It’s never too soon to start planning, but soon it may be too late.
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