Ever take a road trip?
It’s the question that drives parent’s nuts…” Are we there yet?” As a mom, I realized early on the concept of “4 hours until we are there” was not something my 6, 7, and 8-year-olds could comprehend but they did understand “When you are done watching the second movie” will be there. Amazing how just putting this concept into a language they could understand made the whole journey more enjoyable for us all. Well the same is true for our employees.
Four words that drive leaders mad
The same is true in business. All employees want to know where we are headed and when we will get there. In business, this is called Vision, Mission, Purpose and Strategy. These four words can instill a panic or provoke exasperation much like the road trip example for parents. Clarifying where you are going is one, when and how you will get there is one of the most important parts of the journey for your team.
What’s in it for me?
In a world where talent can come so easily, tethering them to a vision or mission they care about is a wise retention strategy. Without it you are more likely to find someone who is only interested in a paycheck and leaves when a better paycheck comes along.
Creating your Vision/Mission/Purpose:
Some companies have all three, others elect to have only a Mission or a Purpose. Either way is fine – it’s about what fits for your company.
Vision creates a tangible picture of what the world looks like that we are creating. For the Alzheimer’s foundation, their vision is “A world, without Alzheimer’s.”It’s very clear what’s important to them, and what success looks like.
Mission or Purpose:
Mission is more like a descriptive journey we are participating in. It focuses the team’s energy helps align priorities and provides an excitement that we are creating something together that couldn’t be done alone. Nike’s mission is: “To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. I love the asterisk (*) as well…*if you have a body, you are an athlete. This mission connects people with serving all, not just the elite athlete, but everyone who aspires to be better.
Action step for the week:
Now for yours. What is it you want to achieve? Here’s a kick-starter: Think about what the world you are building looks like when you are successful. What is the journey or mission you want to achieve? Is it inspiring? Is it clear? Once you do this, get feedback. Don’t FALL IN LOVE with the first thing you write. Define and refine it. Then whittle everything that isn’t core away until you are left with a clear and inspiring T-shirt like statement.
Additional Resources to help you:
We LOVE helping people with their vision, mission and purpose. If you’d like to chat or get some feedback on yours contact us. It would be our honor to help you hone that down so you can help your team settle in for the ride and everyone can enjoy the journey. Our vision is to “Transform Cities and lives through building abundant businesses.” Let us know how we can help you.
Ellie Gates is a Chief Result Officer with Lone Star Business Coaching in Waxahachie, Texas. Ellie works with business owners to help them build better businesses that are less owner dependent with a greater certainty of success; structuring their business to be a more profitable venture that works, without them. For more information or help around this article, feel free to reach out to Ellie at [email protected].