"Vision is tomorrow's reality expressed as an idea today" Orrin Woodward
Winning CEO’s will look you in the eye and say emphatically that, "vision is everything!" and they mean it because they see it as tomorrow’s reality but they also realize that success will not be within their grasp unless they’re able to generate followers is able to burn that vision into the culture and into the hearts of the people they lead.
A reasonable definition of leadership is “the ability to generate followers.” and while that says a lot, Warren Bennis still referred to as the leading scholar on leadership), defined leadership as “the capacity to translate vision into reality.” The key question is: Is the chosen vision the right vision for us?
Considering the uncertainty we are facing, the selected 2017 vision adjustments must be the right ones for the organization, company, or even a family. The lean definition for vision is simply ‘the future desired state’ and must be set by the leaders.
We thank the ATJ reader who raised his concern about vision in this very uncertain economy. It is true that our biggest customer, and next-door neighbour, is locked in an intense leadership battle this fall to determine which of the two dueling visions will be implemented over the next four years. No matter which vision succeeds, there will be an urgent need for each of us to reassess the rightness of the visions that currently drive our organizations.
Because of these upcoming changes, ATJ is focusing this issue on vision so that its spirit can be applied at any level in any organization, workplace, church, or even a family. No one should have any illusions about the fact that no two people, cultures, or visions will be the same. They won’t and this means work for us all. It means taking care not to copy from other jurisdiction’s solutions that your culture will not allow to succeed.
The 62c dollar in 2002 caused one manufacturer to proclaim, “We’ll be out of business if the dollar ever hits 75!” It did. Those still operating were guided by leaders that built and adjusted their visions, paradigms, and strategies to cope with the changes that would work within their culture.
Leaders can be defined by their ability to generate followers. Winning visions must be: 1) Leader initiated 2) Shared and supported 3) Comprehensive and detailed and 4) Positive and inspiring.
These four elements are often referred to as the vision community. Test yours and if any of these elements are missing, ask yourself, “If I added the missing element would it make a difference in my world?”
Business leaders are responsible for choosing the right vision and developing the right operational strategy to drive their people, processes, and technology to ensure attainment of their true north. Our discussions over the last five years have included assertions of the need for practical innovation and a renewed emphasis on problem solving and continuous improvement to help us win which has finally brought lean into the mainstream. We will get to these but first, lets begin at the beginning - determining the right vision.
ATJ’s Vision To make a difference that matters. ATJ is committed to the first principle of lean and believes value is determined from the standpoint of the customer (our readers). Mission ATJ is a voluntary operation that respects, supports, and seeks input from all sources including our readers through an open trust-and-integrity based process that acknowledges all contributions, while always seeking to provide increasing value. Designed by: M&O Lean Communications 2016