Definition and Meaning of Vision Statement
“A company’s Vision is a statement expresses its ultimate objectives.”
It is very vital for a company to have a clear and attainable long-term vision. Vision is statement that actually guides top level management (every chief executive) manager or other company’s employee in achieving the same organizational objective. A vision statement simply asks ‘What does a company want to become in future? It is usually consist of a single sentence, clear, inspirational and memorable statement that expresses company’s desired long-term position or objective. It motivates management and employees to make extra effort and usually it results in higher performance and productivity. Because monetary rewards are not the only motivation of company’s employees, it is obligatory to use other tools vision and mission to increase employee’s motivation. This statement also specifies what resources, competencies and skills will be needed by a particular company to achieve its future long term objective. So it guides decision-making and resource allocation more effectively.
Difference between Vision & Mission Statements of a Company
Almost all companies develop their vision and mission statements together for the same purpose. This often confuses many common people into thinking that vision and mission statements could be used interchangeably, while actually they can’t.
The main differences between the vision and mission statements are as follow:
- Created first? Vision of an organization always developed first while mission can only be developed when vision is available.
- Purpose of Statement Vision statement shows us what an organization wants to achieve while mission statement shows what company is currently doing.
- Answer the question Vision statement answers “what do organization wants to become?” while mission answers “what organization will do?”
- Consist of? Vision consist of objectives and values while mission include product, services, customers, markets, technology, concern of public image, concern of employee and more.
- Present or future regard Vision talks about the future while mission talk about the present.
- For whom it is developed? Vision is developed for the employees of the company while mission is developed for the employees, suppliers, customers, partners, distributors and communities.
- How often does it change? Vision rarely changes because many of objectives takes years to achieve while a company needs to change product oriented mission every time when it decide to venture new product in the market.
How to Write a Vision Statement?
Writing a vision statement is very important and this is the first step of strategic management process. Following are the common step or guidelines to create an effective statement:
Step 1. Gather a team of departmental managers, key employees and shareholders. It is obligatory that all level of company’s employees must understand the vision statement of the company. So, while developing the vision Statement Company must involve as many people as possible, Because involvement of mangers and employee will leads to stronger commitment to company’s vision.
Step 2. Distribute Sample about Vision. After selecting the people that will be involved in development of vision in this second step companies distributes several articles, journals and other vision sample among them and they are supposed to study and know that what is organization’s vision? So selected people read provided samples as a background. Hence they get a clear idea about vision statement.
Step 3. Ask everyone to write his/her own version. In this step companies ask everyone to write his or her own version of the vision and then submit it to the responsible team. After receiving the different vision statements, the prescribed team or top level management makes a combine draft vision out of all the submissions. This step serves as a great opportunity to resolve any conflicting views about firm’s ultimate objective.
Step 4. Revise the statement and present the final version. This is the final step of vision development process. In this step companies again distribute combined draft statement to the members for their final view and revision. Upon receiving the feedback, companies then creates the final version of the vision statement and presents to every member and employee.
Benefits of vision statement
Not all the visions of different organizations are equally good. Some of them are very generic as they focus on financial objectives and as a result such vision statements poorly motivate employees. But if a company makes enough efforts in developing vision statement, it will definitely result into following benefits:
- Motivates and inspires managements as well as employees
- Provides a clear direction or one purpose to work for
- Sets the stretch goals that are impossible to achieve with current resources and capabilities but company progress rapidly
- Guides top level management and marketers in effectively allocating resources
Some examples of Vision statement
The best way to learn and know about creating a vision is to look at the best and bad currently available examples.
The Vision of Microsoft is “A computer on every desk and in every home”
Save the Children is “a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation.
The vision of Feeding America is: A hunger-free America.
Vision of General Motors is: To design, build and sell the world’s best vehicles. (But General Motors should have specified their objective and should mentioned that Best in what?)
Samsung vision is: Inspire the World, Create the Future. (This is too ambiguous and vague as it doesn’t set any objectives).
Vision statement of Ikea is: At Ikea our vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people. (This is an impossible vision to achieve).