Vision v. Information

Something I have really noticed recently is how often leaders confuse Vision with information. I think that we have all heard that inform...

Something I have really noticed recently is how often leaders confuse Vision with information. I think that we have all heard that information does not change people or grab them for that matter. Vision is one of those tricky things in an organization. You want people to have a clear understanding of what you want to accomplish and where you want to go, but you want them to buy in as well. So you have to share it while trying to accomplish both. It is a tight rope to walk and one no one will probably ever master it.

Sharing vision tells people where you are going and invites them to come with you and be apart of something bigger then themselves. Your asking them to accomplish something big with you. Generally information subconsciously tells people you don’t know where you are going you simply know where you are. Information doesn’t suggest that you want to lead but merely that you need help. Vision says you want to lead them to be more than they ever thought possible and to accomplish more than they ever thought they could. Vision is about what’s coming and how they can be a part and information is about where you are and what they can do for you.

Here are a few things I have learned a long the way about casting vision.  

Make it Clear – I never get up and just start talking about vision. I want to be clear in the process of telling people where I want us to go. Tell them where the vision comes from. Share with them the problem you are trying to correct or plan for. Offer a solution that makes an impact.

Don’t just say it feel it – if you don’t seem that you truly buy in to what you are saying then how will anyone else ever feel it and grab on to it. If you don’t seem like you believe it what you are saying neither will they. Passion will leak. John Maxwell tells us that you have connect to a leaders heart before their head will follow. Purpose the problem. Explain why it means something to you and then tell them what you want to do to fix and that you want them to be a part.

KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid! Its an old sales acronym that I use to hear all the time. Don’t overcomplicate everything by trying to show how smart you are. Just keep it as simple as possible and share with everyone what the win is. Information doesn’t lead to buy in, but the possibility of life change will. People are dying to be a part of something bigger than themselves you just have to explain it in such a way that grabs them.

Create a Simple Statement – At orange this year I heard this referred to as a rally cry. Something that is short and sweet and easy for people to remember. Make it something that you can rally your team around. It is a marker that when you say it they know what you are talking about and can get their mind back on track. Or that can be a reminder of how fired up they were the first time they heard it. It puts simple understandable words to what you want to accomplish.

These aren’t the only things to do and there is a whole different set for making vision stick after is has been spoken, but that is for a different blog. Here is my process in its simpliest form for casting vision and avoiding just sharing information. Peole are more concerned with the WHY not the HOW. Give them the WHY and let them figure out what the HOW looks like in their area of the organization.

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