I’m a cathedral builder. I’m building a cathedral. Many of us know the story of the three bricklayers: One reported he was laying bricks, the second was building a wall, and the third was building a cathedral. All three knew their task, but the cathedral builder saw his role in the greater strategic plan because he was motivated by the power of vision.
A vision statement is that part of the strategy that shows where we are going. Like the X on a map, it shows us where we’re headed and keeps everyone moving in the same direction. If done properly, it can become a rallying cry that motivates the team when the going gets tough.
While the vision statement can be extremely motivating to the team that put it together, it may lose its effectiveness as it rolls out across the organization. How do you communicate the power behind the vision statement to those who are executing the plan? There may be many variables that contribute to success but consider these strategies when communicating your vision:
1. Make it visual.
Not everyone is building a cathedral, but the team that created the vision had an image in mind and it needs to be captured. A key element of achieving any goal is being able to visualize the result once it is finished. Whether it’s a drawing, a diagram, or a map, what better way to get the team, customers, or investors on board than to give them the image of where you’re going?
2. Tell a story.
Give life to your vision by providing a good story to tell. People remember stories and like to retell them. Stories also touch their hearts and trigger the emotional element that can motivate individuals to work toward a vision.
3. Make it memorable.
While you may want to communicate a lot in your vision, keep it simple enough to be remembered. If they can remember it, they are much more likely to repeat it.
4. Help everyone understand their role in making the vision a reality.
Like the brick layer, all team members, customers, suppliers, and investors are part of executing the vision. Let team members spend time gaining an understanding of the vision and how their role supports it. If they’re excited about their part of the journey, then they’ll show that through their work and their interactions with customers, clients, and investors.