How to Write a Vision Statement
Where do you see your business in five years from now? If the question caught you off-guard, your business might be missing a vital part of strategic planning: a vision statement. In order to know what your business needs to do, you must know where you want to go – you need a vision for the business.
So, how to write a vision statement and what is it all about? In this guide, I’ll explain the concepts, the key strategies and provide you examples of the good, the bad and the downright ugly.
WHAT IS A VISION STATEMENT?
Every successful business has to define itself. A business can’t survive in today’s competitive world without a clear identity: a story of who, why, what, when, where, and how. A vision statement is a tool for telling a part of this story, helping to define the business.
A vision statement is a short statement to define the core ideas shaping and directing your business. It’s a description of the long-term changes your company wants to achieve with its work, either by providing products or services. By writing a vision statement you are outlining the place where your organization is headed and define what the place will look like.
When you read a vision statement or, indeed, write one for your organization, you are creating a message that can answer the following questions:
- What does the business do?
- How do you help people?
- What are you trying to achieve?
- How are you planning to achieve it?
A vision statement is essentially a summary of the reasons your organization exists and the purpose of it doing what it does. The structure of the statement can vary a bit, as you’ll see later, but the key thing to know is the simplicity of vision statements. A vision statement is not a longwinded answer or a comprehensive business plan: it’s simply the bare-naked reason for your business.
The difference between a vision statement and a mission statement
Every business needs a strategic plan and a vision statement is part of this plan. The other component – a mission statement – is easily mixed with a vision statement. In fact, many companies out there tend to combine the two. You can find one example of such act in the final section with examples – the IKEA example is a good reminder why you should understand the difference between these two statements.
Although both statements are crucial, they serve a different purpose.
Mission statements are essentially based on the present. The statements are about the idea of why the company exists, especially for the customer to understand. A mission statement has two audiences: the company, with the people working for it together with the stakeholders, and any outsider, such as customers and potential customers. If you want to pinpoint a mission statement to a single issue, the statement examines and answers the question “Why does the business exist?” The mission statement should be built around actions – the things the business is doing and will do in the future.
On the other hand, vision statements are focused on the future. The purpose of a vision statement is to outline the future, by focusing on the values and hopes of the business. The purpose is more about inspiring and directing, especially internally. Not all vision statements are public for this reason. Organizations sometimes want to have the vision statement just as an internal guidance of the bigger picture. Nonetheless, vision statements can be public and they can convey the outside, i.e. the customer, what the organization is looking to achieve. In the case of a vision statement, you could define its objective with the question “Where does the business go?” Vision statements are not too concerned about the how, but the purpose is to aspire and paint a picture of the future.
WHY SHOULD YOU HAVE A VISION STATEMENT?
But do you need to have a vision statement? Without a proper vision statement, you lack a clear definition of your objectives. You don’t have that idea of the business laid out and this could impact how well your business performs. The two key ways a vision statement can help your business are its ability to identify and understand your organization’s underlying ambitions and the ability to motivate and inspire your workforce.
First, your business must have a vision for the future even before you’ve written it down. You must have had an underlying reason to start the business and a broad idea of what you want to achieve with the project. If you don’t, you don’t really have a business idea. With a vision statement, you turn this broad concept in your head into a clear message. You clarify your objectives and your ambition.
Instead of “I want the company to create the best apps”, you say “I want the company to create a world where small business can connect with each other easier and improve the society around them”.
Why does it matter? Why does clarifying your future dreams help? It simply reveals the outcomes you are expecting to happen. When you have the outcomes outlined, you can naturally create a better process for achieving them. You aren’t just moving; you get a sense of direction. For example, with the above statements, the latter defines your urge to focus on small businesses, which can mean things like creating apps that are affordable and easy to use with limited resources. You emphasize the value of connectivity, which means you want to instill the value of communication and networking for your business. As you can see, your mission ‘to make apps’ becomes much clearer.
While you might have a vision in your head, a vision statement is concrete and available for others to see. This is important in an organization because you need the different stakeholders to understand the purpose of the business. The employee and the investor have to know where you are heading in order to appropriately help you. It can help them feel more motivated and engaged, according to research.
In a study of employees, the companies who appealed to employees with their vision statement, the engagement levels stood at 68%, while on average the engagement levels tend to stand at 49%. The more engaged your employees are, the more productive they are. You can think about it from your own experience. Perhaps you’ve worked in a business where you didn’t quite get the sense of the values or the bigger picture of the business. Did you enjoy the work? Did it feel meaningful? On the other hand, if you’ve worked in a business where the vision was clearly outlined, you most probably felt more energy, as you understood what the company is trying to achieve.
By creating a vision statement, you are boosting the long-term success of the organization through better strategic planning. You define the values and the guiding objectives for the business, making it easier to plan future actions. But you are also improving the bottom line because you align the business’ processes with the vision and you inspire your employees and stakeholders to subscribe to your vision.
THE COMMON RULES OF A VISION STATEMENT
So, what does a good vision statement look like? Essentially, in order to write a good vision statement, you need to follow four common rules. These are outlined below, together with examples of both good and bad practices.
It has to be short and unambiguous
The key to a good vision statement lies in the length. There’s no specific word count, but you don’t want to write more than two sentences. If you can’t define your vision within less than two to three sentences, you haven’t clarified your true objectives well enough. You can always expand your vision further and go into more detail, but the actual vision statement must be short. Compare the below statements to see how the same essential message can be said with fewer words.
+ Creating a world where healthcare is affordable and accessible to everyone.
– Help people live a healthier life with more healthcare options to choose from. These are affordable solutions and people use them to feel better. We’ll also ensure affordable service to guarantee people with different background can enjoy from the service.
The message should also be unambiguous. You don’t want to use words that don’t create an impact – after all, you are looking to inspire and motivate people. Words are important because they create meaning and emotion. You need to pick the words that describe your vision clearly and have the impact you are looking for. This means avoiding business jargon and fancy talk. Get to the point and make it clear what you are trying to achieve with your vision statement. Look at the examples:
+ We’ll create a world of customer-led content to enhance information sharing across different communities.
– We continue to pursue mission-critical catalysts to value customers while offering emerging content to all.
The second sentence doesn’t say much. It adds fancy words together, but you don’t get a sense of what the end goal is. On the other hand, the first example uses words that are easy to understand and which are full of action, not ambiguity. There are two great rules for avoiding ambiguity with your vision statement:
- Pick word’s that indicate direction and avoid generic word. A generic statement would be to say, “We want to be a success”.
- Avoid being too specific; vision statement shouldn’t become ‘old’. If you say, “We’ll be the best selling bookshop in five years”; you are setting an objective, not a vision. In five years time, you may or may not have achieved the vision and you need to change it.
It should be ambitious, yet simple
Your vision statement shouldn’t just be short, but also aim for simplicity. The vision statement should be easily understood, whether you work in the business or the industry. Although you might keep the vision statement only for the eyes of people working in the organization, you still want it to be understood without knowing much about your business or the industry.
Technical jargon or reading between the lines are not qualities for a proper vision statement. The message has to jump out and be understood within a few seconds. A vision statement is not to be deciphered.
+ We want a world free of office paper waste.
– We implement the waste protocol to meet WRAP standards and clear the world of office waste.
But the above shouldn’t make you feel the vision statement has to be down to earth. Unlike the mission statement or your business plan, a vision statement is the place for dreams. You should be ambitious in the vision statement and not focus on the realistic timeline for achieving them. Reach for the stars with your vision statement and imagine the ideal future for your future.
As mentioned in the previous section, your vision statement doesn’t need to be finished within a set of years – it should be a vision your company is constantly thriving towards.
+ Our hope is to see the beloved town enjoy healthier and more sustainable lifestyle.
– We thrive to create a 100 strong customer base for our range of goods.
It must be specific to the business
The final two core rules of vision statements get more detailed in terms of your specific business. First, your vision statement should always relate to your business and its values. So, if you were tempted at nicking one of the examples from this article, don’t do it. You can’t copy another company’s vision or use a blanket solution – your vision statement is about your business and its ideals.
While vision statements aren’t supposed to outline your specific product or service, or discuss the approach you are taking to achieving your vision, it does have to be part of your company. You shouldn’t have a vision statement aspiring to boost sustainability, if your company has nothing to do with it, doesn’t use sustainable practices or create sustainable products.
The vision statement must be at the heart of what your business is about; the values you instill to your employees. Let’s consider your business is an accounting software company. An example of a good and a bad, business-specific vision statement would look like:
+ Providing people the opportunities to worry less about work and spend more time achieving goals.
– Ensure people are able to live happier.
The bad example isn’t good for two reasons. It doesn’t really define the values and objectives your accounting software can provide. It’s also too ambiguous and unclear. You don’t get any idea what, why and how? There’s no connection between the ideal world and your business. Surely we would all hope to live a happier life, but you need to clarify a bit more why your business also believes in it and how could they help you do it.
It must align with the business values
Finally, your vision statement must align with your business values. You can’t talk about wanting to be known for excellent service, if you don’t place customer service at the core in your actions. In a sense, you need to ‘practice what you preach’. Since the aim of a vision statement is to inspire and motivate your employees and other stakeholders, you need to ensure you talk about the values you want them to exhibit in their work.
Let’s say your business values are sustainability, customer service and social mobility. You want to keep these at the heart of your vision and not include the values you’re not emphasising. For instance, if your business is all about eco-friendly decisions, the good and the bad vision statement might look like this:
+ Creating a network of trading used goods to ensure everyone gets to enjoy the planet for longer.
– Producing products on a large scale to give people efficient service.
THE STEPS TO TAKE
You should now have a good understanding of the building blocks of a vision statement. The above outlined the structure of a good vision statement, together with the focus points. So, how to ensure you create a vision statement that’s fit as a good example? Here are some pointers for writing your vision statement.
Defining your organization’s existence
As you now know, I’ve told about the importance of ensuring your vision statement is business-specific. Therefore, you need to get to the heart of what it is your business does. Why are you operating? Where do you want to go? The best way to start thinking about this is by looking at your mission statement.
Mission statement defines your business purpose and the strategies you want to use, which can be helpful in understanding where you are going. If you don’t have a mission statement made, you should write it before working with your vision statement. Check out the YouTube video for quick tips on writing a great mission statement.
Aside from your mission statement, you’ll find your overall strategic plan to be helpful at this point. If you have an elevator pitch (and you should!), you can look at it to remind yourself of why you do the things you do. You’ll also need to examine and outline your business goals. Goals are part of the vision because they form the basis of the long-term ideas you have for the business.
It’s also helpful to consider your strengths and weaknesses. Knowing what your business is good at can help you define the road you want the business to take and in the end, lead you to the ‘ideal place’. Furthermore, consider things such as the business identity. Each business has a story to tell; something unique that makes them tick and perform in a specific way and you want to find the story and reflect it in your vision statement.
The above documents will start forming in your head and you’ll start noticing key themes. These might be around values, goals or the stories you want to tell – the key is to identify them and use them as part of the basis for your vision statement. It might be that you find a set of words jumping out from the paper, like responsibility, enjoyment, success, or sustainability. Repeating words can be a good idea to start thinking about the future. How do the actions, emotions and characteristics in your strategic plan reflect the vision you might have for the business?
A good idea is to think about the above and use it to reflect the outcomes of your business’ actions. Notice how outcomes are not the same as products or services you provide, but what your business helps customers to achieve. Let’s say you are a vegetable soup business. Although you make soup, the outcome of your business activity is not soup. The outcome is the soup’s impact on the health of the customers when they enjoy the tasty vegetable soup.
By thinking about the output, you start thinking about the vision for your business. For example, in this case it would be improving people’s health with tasty soup. A real life example of a vision statement that focused on output in this manner is the old Microsoft vision statement. It essentially said the vision to be “to put Microsoft computer on every home”. Now, as you know, Microsoft isn’t a delivery company or even a retailer per se. Yet, it saw it’s output to essentially be that of people using a PC at home for different tasks.
To recap, you need to first think about what your business purpose is and how do you go about helping customers. What are the outcomes people have or you want to have when they use the products or services? Remember your vision statement is not to explain what you do, but you can’t define the place you want to be, if you don’t know where you are coming.
Outlining the core values of the business
As well as outlining the purpose and picking inspiration from the strategic plan, you should also consider the core values of the business. What are the behaviors and characteristics you want to highlight with your work? While your values may not be mentioned directly in the vision statement, they should be below the surface – you need the vision to reflect the ideals of your business. If you’ve not thought about your business values, here’s a reminder of what business values are:
- The operational qualities and characteristics you seek to uphold in your performance – both in individual and group level.
- The qualitative goals, you strive to achieve in everything the business does.
Examples of business values include: integrity, honesty, sustainability, and excellence. Each company has it’s own set of values and especially the qualities it chooses to emphasize. Not listing honesty doesn’t mean you don’t want to be an honest company, it might just mean you place greater emphasis on a value such as service. So, like with many things in business, don’t try to copy what others are doing.
If you’re struggling to think about the values most important to your business, sit down and begin writing simple statements. Jot down on the paper, “I believe in…” and continue with your chosen value. Perhaps you believe in co-operation or trust as the pillars of good relationships. Don’t think too hard or analyze your value systems too much, but listen to the inner voices.
When you have a set of core values outlined, you should start looking at them in the light of the purpose of your business. You are essentially looking to align the values of your business with what it does. Think both in terms of the present and the future. Ask yourself:
- What are we currently doing to align our business values with performance?
- Are there areas where our values don’t meet with our performance?
- What needs to be done to guarantee continuous alignment?
By answering these questions, you begin to understand the bigger picture. Why and where is your organization headed?
You might have quite a bit of material to work with at this point. Remember to just consider the information and findings as the building blocks – the key to a good vision statement lies in the simplicity of it. Therefore, don’t feel like all the outcomes or values need to be part of the finished statement. Start distilling your vision to the essentials. Your vision statement is not a business plan and you only need to outline the ultimate vision, not all the things you want to achieve.
Thinking where you want to be in the future
A vision statement is not about the here and now. I want you to step away from the present and start gazing into the future next. Use what you’ve found as the slight touch of realism, but start also thinking big. A vision statement wasn’t a representation of a specific goal you want to achieve in five years – it was about the bigger picture or the ideal future for you and your customers.
In fact, Jené Kapela, the owner and founder of Jené Kapela Leadership Solutions, told Business News Daily how generic and safe vision statements wouldn’t produce the best results. “If a vision statement sets out a generic goal that anyone can agree with, it is likely to produce mediocre results,” Kapela said. Just as I mentioned above, if you just ‘want to be successful’, you’re not giving much information about what success looks like to you. We all want to be a success, but my success is different to your idea of success.
Focus on the future by figuring solid answers to questions like:
- Where is your business going to be in 5/10 years time?
- What will the business look like then? Is it the same size? Does it do the same things?
- What would your business have accomplished by then? What are the key milestones your business has been able to go past?
Visualize your future by mentally scripting what would be said or shown about your company. Imagine I’m interviewing you for the news or an industry specific newspaper. What would the story be about? What are the things you’d be known for and why would your business be loved or respected?
Let’s say you are a photographer and your business provides studio-style photography for families. In 5 years, I might be interviewing because you’ve just started a new branch of studios or perhaps you’ve expanded to become a big fashion photography business. The key is to focus on where you want to be and adding a touch of realism to your vision by understanding your business purpose and values.
Thinking about the future, and creating a vision is important. For a small business or an entrepreneur, visualization is the best way to identify ambitions and focus the efforts needed in order to turn these ambitions into reality. You gain that much needed direction to your business and therefore, you want to spend enough time at this step to truly figure out where you want to go.
To start shaping your vision statement in writing, you should use the following formula to gather your thoughts about the future. You can write a few sentences first:
Five/ten years from now, (the business) will (achieve/accomplish something) by (doing something)
Narrow your sentences down to just a two actions and achievements you want to achieve and use these as the basis for your vision statement. Be a visionary, think outside of the box, and dare to look to the future in a way you want to see it. Remember that big part of the functionality of a vision statement is inspiring others. You need to focus on a future that would motivate people, not bring them down or lead to just mild excitement.
Consider the vision statement by the Canadian Cancer Society, which states, “Creating a world where no Canadian fears cancer”. It’s inspirational and it speaks to your emotions. You immediately think, “Wow! Yes, lets beat this horrible disease.” If they had said, “Reducing the number of cancer deaths”, you wouldn’t get that same, charged feeling. That still sounds great and aspirational, but it’s still essentially saying, “Hey, we can’t figure how to save everyone”.
Sharing your vision with the organization
Once you have your vision statement written or you have a few different versions ready, you should do two things. First, you want to gather some feedback before you publish your vision statement. Show it around to your co-workers or friends and family. They might be able to give ideas regarding the vision and the values you didn’t think about. If the business is your ‘baby’, it can be hard to see how others view it. If you want, you could even show a few different versions to your customers and get their opinion regarding your proposed ideas. Don’t worry if you receive negative feedback.
Try understanding where the person is coming from and whether the feedback has some truth to it. Is the statement too vague? Does it leave the person too cold? Furthermore, don’t just make changes based on what you hear. Some people might try to instill their own visions, which might not actually be what you want with the company. Although each feedback is worth examining, not every critique or suggestion is appropriate or valid in your particular situation.
After you’ve gotten feedback and honed your vision statement, you need to share it with others. As I’ve mentioned from the start, a vision statement is a physical statement written either on a piece of paper or as a digital version. It’s not just an idea you have in your head, but also a statement you can show to others.
Therefore, you shouldn’t just write a vision statement and keep it behind locked doors. Since the key part of a vision statement is its inspirational and motivational ability, you need to make it part of your organization’s core. Each employee and stakeholder must be able to view the vision statement and to get back to it for more inspiration. By sharing the vision statement with your employees and other stakeholders, you are keeping it alive and using it as part of organizational strategy.
The vision statement will, in essence, start manifesting itself in every action, turning the vision into a possibility not just a distant dream. You should use it for business planning – ensuring each action you take and the decisions you make push you forward towards the vision. The same should happen with your employees and investors, so you want to share your vision statement and ask people to use the statement as guidance.
How can you share your vision statement with the organization? You can print it out on a poster to place somewhere where people can see it, add it to your business’ website, and share with employees in their welcome back. The key is to ensure people know about it and they can view the statement whenever they please.
Reviewing your statement
A vision statement needs to be visible and accessible, but it also must be reviewed. Your business shouldn’t just come up with a vision statement and then stick to it like it’s the ultimate truth. Perhaps you do come up with a vision statement that’s so on the point you don’t have to tweak it. But don’t be afraid to look at your vision statement in a few years and make the necessary changes.
First, you might have achieved some of your vision and the statement doesn’t seem as inspirational anymore. Windows’ statement about getting a desktop in every home was inspirational in the early 1990s, but in today’s world, it’s rather redundant. You don’t want your vision statement to lose that spark.
In addition, your company might change and evolve over the years. You shouldn’t be afraid of change and you need to embrace it and reflect it in your vision statement. Perhaps your product development suddenly comes up with an idea that transforms your business or maybe the technological advances force your business to change its operations. You never know what the future will bring and you should keep your mind open for these shifts. If your business or the world around you changes, be ready to change and readjust your vision as well.
Review your vision statement regularly and see how it aligns with what your business is doing. Are you moving any closer to your vision? Do you and the people that work for the business believe in the vision? Essentially, you need to make sure people are continuously inspired by the vision and they utilize the values and principles of the vision statement in the work they do.
There’s a big difference in having a vision statement and living by the statement. If the business doesn’t seem to be practicing what it preaches – if there’s a disconnect between your message and what you do – then you need to figure whether the vision is wrong or if you’re just not doing to right things to implement it. You might not be committing enough time and resources to help establish the vision you’ve established, even though everyone passionately believes in the message.
In these instances, you have to review your operational aspects and see what you are doing wrong. Why isn’t the focus more strongly on the vision? But it might not be about the use of resources. It’s not an easy thing to hear, but sometimes your vision statement is simply not a match for your business. But before you despair, remember that practice does make perfect and finding the right vision statement might take a bit of trial and error.
5 examples of real vision statements
So, now you know the basics of a good vision statement and the process for coming up with a statement for your organization. Before you get to work, it’s auspicious to study other organization’s vision statements. This can clarify the things discussed above and give you an idea of what a good and a bad vision statement looks like in the real world.
The five companies mentioned here are great examples of vision statements, some for good and some for bad. For further ideas and examples, check out TopNonProfits.com and its selection of 30 good vision statements, specifically from the charity sector.
“At American Express®, we have a mission to be the world’s most respected service brand. To do this, we have established a culture that supports our team members, so they can provide exceptional service to our customers.”
American Express is a world-renowned credit card and banking company with a clever vision statement. Although the company specializes in financial services, its vision is centered on what it wants to achieve the most: good customer service. It doesn’t want to be known for its ability to provide financial services, but to offer customers a helpful and comfortable experience.
Why does the above statement work? First, it gets to the point quickly. It doesn’t waste time explaining things, but immediately states what is at the heart of what the company does: becoming “the world’s most respected service brand”. The vision statement highlights well what the guiding principle in the company is. The vision statement gets to the heart of the issue: the company’s desire to be known for its great service to customers.
The agenda is further reinforced in the second line, where the company highlights its belief that good customer service starts from good treatment of its employees. By taking care of the team, the company can use the team is able to better support the customers as well. The vision statement lays down the objective for the company, as well as the process they believe will help them fulfill that vision.
“At IKEA our vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people. Our business idea supports this vision by offering a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them.”
IKEA’s vision statement is rather a double-edged sword. The biggest reason for this is how the statement is actually not just a vision statement. Read the statement carefully and compare it to the points discussed about the difference between a vision statement and a mission statement. As you might notice, the above sentences are a mixture of both. The company has tried to be clever and combine the two, but this is problematic. The vision and the mission of the business are separate ideas. Therefore, while there are good points about the above statement, it still lacks clarity. It doesn’t go further into addressing the vision, other than in the first sentence.
Now the statement is not too bad. If you just stripped it down to the core, which would for vision statement be the first sentence, you would have a decent answer to the question “What’s the purpose?” You can see the company is about helping customers of all sorts to live an easier and happier life. While the sentence provides a glimpse of the vision, you would need a bit more meat around the idea. You’d need a clearer idea of what the core purpose is and the position the company want’s to be in the future.
Save the Children
“Our vision is a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation.”
Without knowing anything about the organization, by reading the above vision statement, you will learn about its core values and even the mission. You can tell the organization works for the betterment of children. Save the Children has managed to highlight its core values and its purpose on a single statement. Indeed, the organization’s statement has the advantage of consisting just a single sentence.
Because of the structure and the words it uses, it doesn’t need anymore than that. The vision statement is full of meaningful and high-impact words like ‘survival’, ‘protection’, and ‘participation’. You immediately notice the purpose of the organization – improving children’s lives – and the core areas of focus – education, security, and human rights.
Nonetheless, unlike some of the other examples, Save the Children’s vision statement doesn’t touch too much on the way it is going to achieve its vision. On the other hand, the vision statement is about aspiration and not action. Therefore, the Save the Children vision statement hits home with its focus on the pure essential: the ambitious plans the organization has for its future.
“Reebok is dedicated to providing each and every athlete – from professional athletes to recreational runners to kids on the playground – with the opportunity, the products, and the inspiration to achieve what they are capable of. Everyone has the potential to do great things.”
Reebok’s vision statement focuses mainly on the values of the company. The sports company aims to make products, which are available and accessible to all. Through the statement, you can see the company wants to be for everyone, not just for the top athletes, but the amateurs as well. If you’d have to pick one excellent aspect of the vision statement, it would have to be the focus on inspiring others. Reebok wants to be a company motivating people to be active, according to their skills. But it doesn’t just want that, it also inspires people with its vision statement as well. The statement talks about everyone being able to unlock his or her potential.
It speaks directly to the audience, telling them to join the vision and to stop worrying whether they fit in – the Reebok family wants to include everyone. The message from the above statement is clear and it personally touches you. It doesn’t just outline what the company wants, but also calls you to become part of the vision because you are great. Reebok manages to say that its vision is not really about its own products, but about empowering you to reach your potential. The great achiever is you, not the sports shoes you wear.
“PepsiCo’s responsibility is to continually improve all aspects of the world in which we operate – environment, social, economic – creating a better tomorrow than today. Our vision is put into action through programs and a focus on environmental stewardship, activities to benefit society, and a commitment to build shareholder value by making PepsiCo a truly sustainable company.”
Finally, you have PepsiCo’s vision statement. The vision statement gets to the heart of what the company is trying to do and become: be a sustainable company that seeks constant positive change around it. The statement clearly outlines the two key values the company holds dear: sustainability and development.
It shows the company doesn’t want to just put money in the pockets of the shareholder, but create value among the community it operates in. The vision statement works because it helps you to understand the driving force of the company. You can easily pick out the different values the company wants to highlight, as it uses words like ‘commitment’, ‘stewardship’, and ‘responsibility’.
Furthermore, the statement delves deeper into the objectives for obtaining the vision. The company talks about the programs it runs in order to create change and to ensure sustainability. While the vision statement looks rather long at first glance, each word has a meaning, and the two sentences both add value to the statement. You don’t feel like removing any of the information you are given.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Writing a vision statement isn’t rocket science. But just because it’s not hard doesn’t mean it’s straightforward. A perfect vision statement takes time and proper understanding of your business. And while the statement might seem like a relatively unimportant sentence to write, a vision statement can provide plenty of benefits to your business strategy.
A vision statement is a look to the future; it’s a roadmap of what you are and where you want to be. A business can use it to focus its message and operational efficiency, but it can also inspire and motivate the workforce. It creates unity within the organization because it paints a picture for everyone to see. With a vision statement, you are saying, “this is where we want to be, this is what you deserve to create”.
Although vision statements are concise and short, creating the perfect message takes a lot of planning. You need to know your business inside out and identify the values and behaviors, which matter to you the most. If you want your vision statement to work, you need to fully commit to it and believe its message. A vision statement you don’t believe in is never worth writing.