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How Your Company Vision Contributes to Strategy Implementation

By Jenna Sedmak - November 26, 2020


While having a company vision statement is great, we also encourage organizations to assess and refine their mid-term vision on a regular basis. Your company vision serves as the foundation to your strategic plan, and it’s a critical part of the alignment and strategy implementation process. In short, vision discussions within the strategic planning cycle are more specific, dynamic, and mid-term, while your set vision statement may be more general, static, and long-term.

>> Watch: 6 Critical Capacities for Strategy Implementation


By defining your future vision as a part of the strategic planning process, your team will define a clear picture of what a successful future looks like at a set time in the future (for example, three years from today’s date). By including a visioning exercise in each strategy review cycle, it allows your people to clearly define and agree on specific critical success factors. By having this agreement early on, it establishes a common language and destination for your team to work towards when developing the rest of the strategic plan.

Essentially, establishing and communicating your vision helps to ensure that your key people are aligned and working towards the same future destination.


Visioning Exercise for Your Strategy Session (or Strategic Plan Review) 

Before diving into the why (mission), what (strategies), and the how (tactics) in your strategic planning session, it’s important to first agree on where you want to go as an organization. By defining your destination, your team can then build a roadmap for how to get to that place.

When we lead strategy meetings, whether in person or online, we always include a visioning exercise early in the process. Here is our step-by-step exercise that you can follow with your team:

  1. Ask everyone in the group to close their eyes, and imagine they’ve time traveled to today’s date three years in the future.

  2. Now have everyone in the group think jot down some notes (on paper, or a virtual notepad) on what success looks like in this future (it’s important to be specific)

    **Probing questions to consider: What are we celebrating? What are some of our “wins”? What targets have we hit? What do we excel in? What are we doing particularly well?

  3. Have each team member share their individual vision of success and have someone in the group (ideally a facilitator) write down a master list for each item

  4. Now give each participant 5 “stickers” (either physical for in-person, or virtual using a shared document or software) to vote on their top five items

  5. Review the list and organize the items with the most votes (usually 5-10 items)

  6. Discuss as a group and ask everyone if they agree that this list represents where they want to be in three years’ time. If there are any disagreements, this is an important time to discuss them. *Double check for alignment, and make sure that you hear clear yes and no answers from each participant during this stage.


>> Watch our Vision Video for more best practices for developing your
organization's vision & mission 


Once you’ve completed this exercise, your team will be ready to delve into the rest of the VMOST framework, moving onto discussion your organization's mission. 


strategic planning pyramid image-1


Communicating Your Company Vision and Strategy

Once you’ve completed the initial strategic planning process with your team, it is critical to cascade your strategy throughout the organization. Leaders should share the plan with their teams to foster alignment and buy-in within each team.

It’s not enough to share the tactics and action plan; it’s important to also share your vision of what a successful future looks like so that your people understand where they are going, why the organization wants to go there, and how they can contribute in their role to achieving this desired future state. By communicating a clear company vision alongside your strategic plan, your team will be empowered to contribute to strategy implementation.

Are you ready to lead your team through the strategic planning process? 
Our course provides the tools, templates and resources for each stage: 

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