A good vision combines two essential elements: core ideology and envisioned future. In the last post, we discussed core ideology as the first main component of a good vision.
Let’s take a look at the envisioned future.
An envisioned future, according to Collins and Porras, is the way through which core ideology is turned into a tangible goal that challenges your business.
An envisioned future consists of two parts:
- Vision-level BHAG. A 10-to-30-year audacious goal.
- Vivid descriptions of what it will be like to achieve the goal.
Collins and Porras found that visionary businesses often use audacious missions, which they refer to as BHAGs (pronounced BEE-hags and abbreviation for Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals).
A BHAG :
- It is clear and appealing serves as a unifying focal point of work, and functions as a motivator for team spirit.
- It provides a clear finish line, so the organization knows when it has met the goal.
- People want to go toward the finish lines.
- It engages people – it reaches out and grabs them.
- It is real, energetic, and laser-focused.
- People get it right away.
- It requires little or no explanation.
Creating such a goal, in fact, challenges an executive team to be visionary rather than merely strategic or tactical. A BHAG should not be a sure bet – it may only have a 50 percent to 70 percent chance of success – but the company must think that it can achieve the goal anyway.
Vivid Description is an engaging and specific description of what it will be like to achieve the BHAG.
A vivid description, according to Collins and Porras, is necessary for making a BHAG tangible. They say it’s like creating a picture with your words. Painting pictures is important for making the 10- to 30-year BHAG tangible in people’s minds.
Creating alignment may be the most important thing you do. However, the first step is always to recast your vision or mission into an appropriate framework for creating a visionary company. If done correctly, you should not have to do it again for at least a decade.
“The key point is that visionary companies display a remarkable resiliency to bounce back from adversity and shine over the long term.”James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras
Here are related researches:
- Collins, J.C. (2002). Vision framework.
- Collins, J.C. & Porras, J.I. (1996). Building your company’s vision.
- Reingold, J. & Underwood, R. (2004). Was “Built To Last” built to last?
Thanks for reading! Please drop me a comment if you have any questions or additions!
2 replies on “How Develop a Company Vision? Part 2: Envisioned Future”
Great article! I love how you mentioned alignment, if your goals are not aligned with your values (and vice versa) it can be hard to stay on track.
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Thanks for your comment!