If you were to ask any random person who worked for any random organization two certain questions, you would have powerful insight into their overall values and culture.
The 2 questions to ask are:
What is your company’s vision and what does it value?
Do know know exactly what is expected of you throughout the day?
These two questions may seem quite elementary, but they can reveal either synergy or dysfunction within the ranks.
Most leaders and managers, if asked those same two questions, would probably tell you in great detail the company’s vision and what is expected of them. But when these questions get drilled down to the rest of the organization, things usually get fuzzy. Many employees know precisely what they need to do, but have no idea how it feeds into the big picture. Conversely there are many others who know where the company is going, but not what are they supposed to be doing each day to feed into those goals. To ensure that everyone knows a clear vision and expectations, the vision needs to be strong among the leadership.
Many barriers exist in threading through both vision and expectations. But the stronger your company’s vision is, the greater the likelihood that your people will have a clear picture of what they need to do in order to realize the goal.
When leaders focus on the vision, see it clearly, and are fully engaged, they will naturally ensure the flow of vision and the laying out of a clear path to accomplish it. When a truly committed leadership team builds a strong vision, the following outcomes flow freely through the organization:
- Alignment. Strong vision will enable the entire organization to answer the most important question: “Why?” Why does the company exist, what makes us unique, and who are we?
- Communication. Strong vision cannot truly exist without honest and continual communication. It will occur in every interaction, whether training, meetings, or general work duties.
And the by-product of full alignment and solid communication? Clear expectations of what is needed to accomplish the individual parts and achieve the whole. Clear expectations include fully congruent training methods, continuous improvement processes, and mutual accountability measures to help give feedback, enhancement, and track alignment of everyone’s steps towards the goal.
By developing a strong vision within your organization, you will create an environment where everyone will know what is expected of them. And in the slight occasion where that falls through, your staff will be more empowered to work towards the goals by understanding what the ultimate “Why” of the company is.
Build a strong vision daily and communicate it at each interaction.
More From Paul LaRue
Paul LaRue is the creator of The UPwards Leader and Instigator for Lead Change Group. His background in senior leadership, strategic planning, culture change, and people and organizational development gives him unique insight into the workings of successful organizations. Paul has given speeches and training sessions for many public and private entities and stresses the virtue of a culture that centers around core values and character in leadership.