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Why Your Vision Statement Is Overrated

Vision statements are a dime a dozen as far as I’m concerned. Everyone these days has a vision statement. A few years ago, everyone had a “2020 Vision.” Soon it will be a “2050 Vision,” and so on. At the end of the day, however, a vision statement is just a statement. It has no life on its own. It cannot, nor will it ever, energize, unify or align an organization. This task falls to the leader. A vision statement is only as strong as the leader is. Vision is only as clear as the leader is. Vision is only as compelling as a leader makes it.

A vision is stewarded and sustained by a leader.

A vision defines why we exist. No matter what we call it, preserving the vision requires we answer one question at the outset: “Why are we here?” The vision is our bull’s ­eye. Let’s keep it simple. Leadership involves keeping our organization so focused on the vision that people are willing to sacrifice for it. If we get that right, everything else will fall in place.

Then, how do we communicate it? How do we get everyone passionate about it as we are? How do we keep everyone aligned around it? How do we protect vision drift? These tasks fall to the leader!

Having a vision statement is just a small slice of the pie. It’s one thing to say we have a vision. It’s another thing to live it out.

Shawn Lovejoy talks about this issue in depth in his new national release Be Mean About The Vision: Preserving & Protecting What Matters. Shawn is Founder & CEO of CourageToLead.com, a one­-on-­one coaching ministry for leaders.