It All Starts With Vision
September 24, 2009 Leave a comment
I’ve never thought of myself as a visionary, but recently I’ve come to understand the importance of vision. Most companies, okay all companies who stand a chance, have some sort of vision statement. What are we trying to accomplish? What is our purpose? Why do we exist? A successful company or organization is one that keeps their vision at the core of all they do, like a filter. And the leader of that organization must be a visionary, either by nature or by trade.
Take Coca-Cola (the only respectable soft drink). Their Vision Statement is as follows:
Our vision serves as the framework for our Roadmap and guides every aspect of our business by describing what we need to accomplish in order to continue achieving sustainable, quality growth.
- People: Be a great place to work where people are inspired to be the best they can be.
- Portfolio: Bring to the world a portfolio of quality beverage brands that anticipate and satisfy people’s desires and needs.
- Partners: Nurture a winning network of customers and suppliers, together we create mutual, enduring value.
- Planet: Be a responsible citizen that makes a difference by helping build and support sustainable communities.
- Profit: Maximize long-term return to shareowners while being mindful of our overall responsibilities.
- Productivity: Be a highly effective, lean and fast-moving organization.
Now that’s a pretty extensive statement, one that has probably evolved throughout the years. My point? It’s important for organizations to have vision. So what is the vision of the United States government? What about the state of Maryland? Baltimore County?
After a quick google search, I found nothing at the federal or state levels, but for Baltimore County, I found this:
We envision a Baltimore County with strong, healthy families where children are nurtured to achieve their full potential, where individuals live lives of maximum independence, and where all citizens realize their full capacity to be productive, contributing members of the community.
Did you know that Baltimore County even had a vision statement? Now, I’ve never been to a county council meeting (hey, I said I was new to all this), but I’m wondering how often they read these words at their meetings? I wonder how often an objection is raised to legislation in light of this very statement. “But Councilman, how is that speed cameras maximize independence?” Nah, I’m pretty sure this statement is reserved for pretty letterheads alone.
But I will say one thing. The last line, “productive, contributing members of the COMMUNITY,” that’s why I do this. That’s what I give a flip who my councilman is, who’s representing me and my children at all levels. I want to live in a community, not just a suburb of Baltimore or an exit off the Beltway. I want to live where people know my name (awww, that brings back memories; Cheers), and not just because of what I do. I want to empower people to be involved in what is going on around them, to make Catonsville, and surrounding areas, a safe place for our kids to grow up, to “become productive, contributing member of THIS COMMUNITY.” That’s my vision politically, my filter.
What’s your vision? What’s your filter? And I don’t mean in the big scheme of things. I’m not speaking to the purpose of life. My purpose in life is not to get people elected, it’s to bring glory to my Creator (my apologies for mixing politics and religion). I’m speaking to politics specifically. Why do you care? And what are you going to DO about it?
Really, it’s just a simple question.