I often find myself thinking about vision: physical vision, financial vision, business vision, spiritual vision.
We use this word to mean so many things: from the actual physical interpretation of light in order to make sense of our surroundings to our ability as humans to decide a course we should pursue and to follow it.
When my son and my wife both started seeing a vision therapist for convergence issues in 2018, we began to see the power of physical vision. My son could not focus on things in front of his face which led to clumsiness and headaches. My wife’s Master’s level reading became so stressful on her eyes that she made it through her last classes by having people read the books out loud to her.
Physical vision problems impact our entire lives. Without business vision, we cannot run our businesses at their best.
Anyone who has done direct sales knows that if you sound desperate when you are talking to someone about your business, it is impossible to get your ideal client to buy from you. In the same way, if you do not have a vision for your business beyond “I need sales now,” it is impossible to really develop the systems and practice the work that it takes to get your ideal customers.
Without vision for your business, you cannot get customers. Without customers, you have no business.
“Where there is no vision, the people perish.” (Proverbs 29:18)
Describing a vision and convincing others to take part in that vision is an essential part of leadership, but without certain fundamentals, your business vision will not be accurate.
Four Fundamentals of Business Vision
- You need to see the win-win for everyone. I often hear people complaining about business, about politics, about customers, about the market. You cannot think and act like this and be able to cast vision for your business. You need to see the positive and how your business creates win-win scenarios for everyone involved.
- You need to see your customers’ needs. Every business is fulfilling the felt need of that business’s customers. If you don’t see your customers’ needs for the vision you have, adjust your vision.
- Start with what you have. I have business students come up to me and give me a list of all the things they need to start a business. Capital, equipment, employees, a website, the list of things you need can go on. Your business vision needs to see where you want to go AND how to get there. If you are not able to start where you are at, you will trip at unseen roadblocks along the way.
- Vision without action is meaningless. Cloud gazing is a wonderful time to clear your vision; it helps you rest your eyes and see things you might not have in the daily grind. But, if you never stop looking far ahead, across the horizon, you will never be able to grow. If your vision for your business does not include the action steps for growth, and if you do not follow those action steps, your vision is meaningless.
If you have the fundamentals of business vision down (win-win and fill a need, start and act now), then you can look at the past to see where you have been and begin to formulate a vision for the present into the future.
2020 is here. If you do not already have a detailed vision for 2020 in place, take some time to review what 2019 looked like, and also what the last 10 years have brought you.
Who have you helped? How did you help them?
What did you enjoy about the last year? the last 10 years?
Are there things that need to change?
Take a good look at your business, and begin to describe where you are currently at: the good and the bad, the wins and the losses.
From that point, you will have a more accurate picture of where you are now.
From now, look to the future.
As you think about the vision for the year to come, realize that strategy needs to look and plan for the future. When you are going to cast a vision for your business, it is not enough to look at the micro-goals you will act on to achieve your vision for 2020. You need to have a big picture strategy for the future of your business, and a medium picture strategy of the next few years and how they will get you closer to that big picture.
As we begin a new decade, I am going to be discussing vision more: both for Paul Davis Solutions, and how you can set and use vision in your own business.
Here is to a happy new year, and many more to come!