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How To Craft Your Company’s Strategic Vision
Looking to capture your strategic vision in one succinct statement? Here’s what you need to consider to guide your organization to success.
Strategy is a prime component of organizational success. Regardless of the strategic planning model you choose to develop your strategy, you’ll need to craft a strategic vision that accurately identifies your near-term goals and puts your workforce on the right path to accomplish them.
Strategic Vision Definition
What is strategic vision? It is often used synonymously with the term mission statement, but each has their unique distinctions:
- A mission statement is an overarching concept that’s timeless, meaning it likely won’t change unless the organization goes through a major transformation. At a high level, this statement describes what your company does, or how your organization differs from others in your competitive space.
- A strategic vision statement supports the mission statement, but is more tangible. It describes an achievable future state of an organization—exact timelines may vary, but typically range from three to 10 years. This statement should help you and your employees visualize where the organization is headed. Here are a few examples in practice.
Since the strategic vision is time-bound, you’ll likely create (and recreate) your statement numerous times. Each time you revisit your strategic vision you have another opportunity to define your organization's path forward. Keep reading to learn about aspects that will help optimize your strategic vision with every iteration.
Crafting Your Strategic Vision: 5 Things To Consider
1. Establish tangible goals.
The goals you set should be clear enough to know exactly when you’ve accomplished them. Having precise goals as part of your strategic vision ensures everyone in your organization knows what they’re working toward. Any vagueness or ambiguity in your statement may trickle down into operational misunderstandings that will hinder your success. You can use tools like strategy maps to help identify relevant goals.
2. Be realistic.
The strategic vision of a company should be ambitious, but also realistic. Given the resources your company has available, can you actually achieve your desired goals? For example, if you want to become number one in your industry, but the current market leader has ten times your annual revenue, that’s a significant hurdle to overcome. The amount of effort and resources required to surpass them likely isn’t feasible in just a few years, so you might adjust your goals to focus on improving market share or beating competitors with revenues reasonably above your own.
3. Keep your mission in mind.
Your mission statement should always act as a guide for both your operational and strategic efforts. When developing your strategic vision statement, ensure that whatever goal and verbiage you choose doesn’t go against your mission. Misaligned statements can result in conflicting actions within the organization, negatively impacting company culture and even financial performance.
4. Focus on guiding and inspiring your workforce.
One element that a strategic vision has in common with a mission statement is the ability to guide and inspire those within the organization. The difference lies in how each statement accomplishes these feats: While your mission influences general decision-making among employees, your strategic vision helps leaders devise specific actions to reach your desired goals.
5. Adapt when necessary.
Depending on the type of business you operate, you may need to change your strategic vision from time to time. Accepting this fact goes a long way in ensuring your organization is more agile and adaptable. For example, many for-profit companies must consider evolving market conditions in their strategic planning, which may require adjusting the strategic vision annually. In contrast, a local government may only change its strategic vision every five or even 10 years.
Strategic vision statements consistently move the organization forward in line with your mission. And because a vision can only be realized with the help of your entire workforce, sometimes the strongest statements are crafted with input from everyone, at all levels—not just leaders. With all employees invested and on board, you have a better chance of staying on the defined path and achieving your goals.
But you also must take concrete steps to realize your strategic vision. Start relevant projects with time frames that align with your strategic vision’s timeline. Track progress through timely meetings and reporting. And do it all easily with ClearPoint, strategy execution software that helps organizations of all sizes effectively execute strategy, efficiently manage projects, and save time on reporting. Contact us to learn more.