The Full Steam Ahead! Roadmap
This is a “how to” post – for leaders and team members who want to create a shared vision. Over the years I have written blog posts that provide an explanation of each of these steps. This post connects the dots by linking these posts with the steps they support. This is the roadmap for the process I use to create a shared vision that not only inspires, but provides clarity on direction and ongoing guidelines for decision-making.
Step 1: Create a Compelling Team Vision
1) Before you begin, everyone should understand the three elements of a compelling vision and how they are interrelated.
Three Keys to Visions That Work . . . → Read More: How to Create a Shared Vision That Works
This is a lovely moment. The darkest day of the darkest week of the year in the northern hemisphere.
It is the moment before the balance shifts and light begins to overtake darkness.
On the winter solstice, the rhythm of the sun pauses as it changes direction from decrease to increase.
If we pay attention, we, too, can’t help but pause.
This darkest day of the darkest week beckons us to pause.
What does any great athlete do before they…
…. dive into the water
…. throw the discus
…. grab the rings
What are they thinking about?
Nothing — absolutely nothing.
Shabbat means stop, cease. That’s what this week beckons us . . . → Read More: Pause Before You Plan
When I ask people to describe what it would look like if there were world peace, it’s hard for them to conjure up specific images or descriptions. However, they easily provide vivid descriptions of what a post-World War III world would look like. All they have to do is describe a recent movie or a video game.
On a daily basis we are bombarded with images of destruction in movies, on television and even in electronic games that children play. In contrast, we see few images of a positive future.
The images we hold in our mind have a tremendous impact on the reality we create.
Positive images are not easy to find, but there are more than . . . → Read More: The Images We Hold Create Our Reality
Is it possible to earn a living, have fun and make a difference in the world? Jocelyn Jackson and Keri Keifer have figured out how.
Their business Grace Hearth might be considered a catering company – they cater all sizes of events, from weddings and meetings to small social gatherings.
But the first time I saw their video, I quickly realized they were in the same business I am – building community – only through food instead of facilitating dialogue.
Grace Hearth provides food for all types of occasions, but as Jocelyn and Keri explain in their video, they are actually in the “nourishing business.”
I was so excited after watching this video, I had to interview the owners to learn more about . . . → Read More: What Business Are You Really In? Grace Hearth Knows
The assumption that change has to start at the top is wrong. You don’t have to wait for senior leaders to make it a better place.
Managers don’t have to wait for senior management to start a process of organizational revitalization. ~Michael Beer
The first step in building shared vision is to give up the traditional notion that vision is always announced from “on high.” ~Peter Senge
Begin within your own sphere of influence.
Where do you have the greatest influence? Most likely within your own team. Consider the widest sphere that you can impact. This is the place to start.
Take responsibility to provide leadership.
Leadership is more than just good management practices. Leadership is about going somewhere.
Where . . . → Read More: Stop Waiting for Someone Else to Provide Leadership
The team was excited and energized. They had created a vision that would lead to the breakthrough they had been looking for.
They set goals and identified next steps, roles and communications. They had a great plan and the means to achieve it.
All set, right?
They fell victim to “creative tension.”
Working toward the vision was not as exciting as the process of creating it. At times it was downright mundane.
It was harder than they had anticipated. It required more work, making adjustments to plans, communications and coordination was more difficult.
Some people began to say the vision wasn’t practical. Others decided they really didn’t want the vision after all.
Soon things on the team returned to normal, and life returned to . . . → Read More: Prepare for Creative Tension or It May Cloud Your Vision
When I published my Value of Vision series, I had no idea I had done something unusual. I am concerned about the current lack of interest around vision in leadership, and I had hoped that publishing a series of views from a variety of experts might help boost the topic back onto the radar.
I was surprised when Wally Bock told me he hadn’t seen a blog series like this before – one with so many significant thought-leaders writing on the same subject. Wally asked for an interview to identify some lessons that had made the series successful.
Wally Bock is a highly respected and accomplished business writer, ghost-writer, and editor. In addition to his popular Three Star Leadership blog, Wally writes the Zero Draft . . . → Read More: How Important Is Vision in Leadership? The Question is the Answer
Considering the compelling case for the value of vision, it’s strikingly absent these days.
Recent research by Kouzes and Posner demonstrates that “being forward-looking is the quality that most separates leaders from individual contributors.”
However, “it’s something that too few fully appreciate, and too many devote almost no time to developing,” says Jim Kouzes.
What happened to vision? Where has she gone?
She held so much promise 30 years ago when people like Warren Bennis, Peter Senge, Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner first brought her to our attention.
Did she get worn out? Did she grow old and tired? No, it’s worse than that.
Vision has been prostituted.
By mission statements that are no more than meaningless marketing messages – We have covered her in . . . → Read More: Looking for Vision? She’s Out Walking the Streets in Stilettos
I had the pleasure of interviewing Doug Conant, newly appointed Non-Executive Chairman of Avon and the former President and CEO of Campbell Soup, where he led the company through a dramatic transformation, reversing the declining trend in earnings and employee engagement. Under his leadership, the company generated quality sales growth and some of the best employee engagement rankings in the industry for ten consecutive years.
I am delighted to be able to share Doug’s views on vision here. ~Jesse
What do you observe about people’s attitudes toward vision these days, Doug?
One thing I’ve observed in all of my speaking, from millennials at Google to boomers at Vanguard, is that people today are less interested in the vision and more interested in “how to.” . . . → Read More: The Value of Vision Series – An Interview With Doug Conant