Creating Your Vision Statement
A vision is a snapshot of your company in the imaginable future: 3, 5, or 10 years from now, depending on the business environment and the company. A vision provides direction, raises the standard of excellence, helps to focus, and brings positive change. If your strategy presents the road you’ve chosen, a vision is a certain future milestone on that road.
A good vision statement is able to answer the following questions:
- What do we want to be as a company?
- How have we become like that; what is the change that has happened?
- Why will we be successful; what leads to success?
The CEO is responsible for defining the vision statement, he/she has to converse with others in the company while formulating the statement. However, a vision must not be a compromise of compromises, otherwise it has no value.
Here are guidelines to remember in formulating the vision:
- It states what we want to become as a company in the middle or long term
- It is compelling, but within reach
- It is customer value focused
- It is not too specific
- It provokes emotion and excitement
- It shows the direction in which we need to move
- It makes clear what we need to have or do in order to achieve it
- It is memorable: brief and succinct
Here are some vision statements for your inspiration
“Our vision is clear: To become the highest performing regional provider of energy products and services, strengthening our region’s security, stability and vitality”
– Northeast Utilities
“To be the best performing industrial gases company in the world as determined by our customers, employees, shareholders, suppliers and the communities in which we operate.”
“Our Vision is to become the premier energy company in the Northeastern United States. The Northeast region represents a significant part of the country’s population and gas and electricity consumption.”
“Our vision is to be earth’s most customer centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online.”
“To become the world’s leading packaging company by achieving sustainable and consistent growth by providing consumer preferred products that enable superior taste, health, visual appeal and value benefits for our business customers’ products.”
“Our vision: To be an innovative, respected global energy company, recognized as outstanding by employees, investors, customers and the public; and to be the standard by which other businesses are measured.”
“We intend to revolutionize the health care industry in our markets through innovation, technology, quality performance, and commitment to our customers and constituents. Our aim is to offer products and services that will responsibly improve the quality of life of all we serve. We will conduct our business affairs in an ethical and financially prudent manner through employee development, involvement and empowerment, while demonstrating compassion to our members and setting a standard for all others to achieve.”
– Coventry Health Care
“Our Vision: To substantially reduce traffic accidents, fatalities and injuries. ”
“Tenneco Vision: Pioneering global ideas for cleaner, quieter and safer transportation.”
– Tenneco Automotive
“Our vision for the future is to be the preferred tax and financial partner of each of our customers, in every market we serve.”
– H&R Block
“Vision: People love our clothes and trust our company. We will market the most appealing and widely worn casual clothing in the world. We will clothe the world.”
– Levi Strauss
Another blog post on vision statements: The Vision Statement
Aarni Heiskanen has co-written a book with more examples on vision statements and case studies on envisioning. Buy it as an ebook!