Many of us business owners have spent time in thought contemplating business goals, but, while goal setting is certainly an important part of a successful business venture, vision is the glue needed to adhere our goals to the values in our lives. Goals are mile stones, and vision is the guiding purpose of our goals. A business without goals may be at risk of failure, but a goal without vision can destroy happiness. For example, simply setting a goal to find a job is not enough. Vision is needed to establish the purpose of employment.
So how does vision help my business? One needs vision to develop a proper plan, so, again, a plan without vision may not capture the values of the business owner. Let’s explore a little deeper. Let’s say a business owner has a goal to generate $100k in revenue. Is that enough? Maybe….but probably not. What is the vision of the owner? Does the goal incorporate this vision? Maybe the $100k goal is obtainable but at the expense of the owner’s family due to travel for business. A plan that includes vision can help ensure that a business will stay connected to the values of the owner and optimize a great work-life balance.
The best place to start is by asking yourself about the continuity between your business life and your personal life. Set the overall vision of your business. How does your work life balance look? Does your business involve employees? If so, how many and how would you like to treat them? These questions can help set the stage for vision creation. Once the vision is created the goals should be set and measured against the vision to make sure they are congruent.
Large and small companies write vision statements to guide the decision making process. If a decision is in opposition to the vision statement, the decision should be reconsidered. For example, a business owner has the following vision statement….To create the best widgets in the most ethical manner. So, if the business owner can outsource the widget production to a factory overseas with deplorable conditions but increase profits 10%, the decision flys directly in opposition to the vision statement.
Goals and vision work hand in glove to create a successful business, but one without the other can create a crack in the path to happiness. When creating a business plan don’t forget to include a vision statement. Do you have a vision statement? What are you doing with your business to create a great work-life balance?