Your Shop's Vision
Your Shop’s vision should seek to outline where the company is headed and what values are guiding that journey.
It amplifies Your Shop’s purpose by focusing on the future and what it exists to achieve.
Michelin Vision Statement
For over a century, Michelin has been committed to offering our customers the best tire at the best price in each segment of the market and setting the standard in quality of service. To help us progress together, our principles must also be yours.
To become a highly respected, world-class tire company, with a strong global brand identity that earns the devotion of our customers.
Our goal is to be a company that:
Stays one step ahead of the future through constant technological innovation; Drives entrepreneurial and creative spirit through a progressive culture, and Shares in the enjoyment felt by everyone involved in our activities.
What is a vision statement?
Similar to a mission statement (which we cover in the next section), a vision statement provides a concrete way for owners, partners, and especially employees, to understand the meaning and purpose of your business. However, unlike a mission statement – which describes the who, what, and why of your business – a vision statement describes the desired long-term results of your company’s efforts. For example, an early Microsoft vision statement was “a computer on every desk and in every home.”
A vision statement versus a mission statement
Before determining your vision statement, you need to understand what it is not. It should not be confused with a mission statement. Those statements are based in the present and designed to convey why the shop exists to both your staff and your community.
Vision statements, on the other hand, are future-based and meant to inspire and give direction to employees of the company rather than customers.
The vision should motivate the team to make a difference and be part of something bigger than themselves.”
The mission statement focuses on the purpose of your shop.
The vision statement looks to the fulfillment of that purpose.
Although both mission and vision statements should be core elements of your organization, a vision statement should serve as your company’s guiding light.
A vision is an aspiration.
A mission is actionable
Why does this matter?
Research shows that employees who find their company’s vision meaningful have engagement levels of 68%, which is 18 points above average. More engaged employees are often more productive.
Given the impact that a vision statement can have on a company’s long-term success and even its bottom line, it is worth taking the time to craft a statement that synthesizes your ambition and mobilizes your staff.
Who shapes your vision?
The first step in writing a vision statement is determining who will play a role in writing it. Get everyone on staff to have some input, this is a great exercise for everyone to participate in. This could also be the beginning of your company culture. (We’ll cover that in a later session.
How to use your vision statement
“The vision statement should be thought of as part of your strategic plan. ( We’ll go deeper into strategic planning in later sessions covering SWOT Analysis and SMART Goals.)
For now, you want your vision statement to be viewed as a living document that will be revisited and revised. You want it to speak directly to your staff.
If your employees don’t buy into the vision, you’ll never be able to carry it out.
The vision statement should be something your employees believe in. Only then will they make decisions and take actions that reflect your shop’s vision.
You can then acknowledge and reward employees when they are working in alignment with the shop’s vision. This will become infectious will the other staff.
How to write a vision statement
Don’t get overwhelmed and caught up. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel to develop a powerful vision statement.
One idea would be to look at the vision statements of your competitors to determine how you can differentiate your business from theirs.
A vision statement should be concise, no longer than a sentence or two.
It’s for your team and culture, not for selling a specific product.
You can start by mapping out your shop’s goals.
Reviewing your long-term goals in a collaborative setting will help you then zoom out on what your organization and the community will look like if you achieve them. That zoomed-out view of your success is really the heart of your vision statement.
Here are a few of the questions to help guide you to start to identify your vision statement:
- What influence do you want the shop to have on your community?
- How will your shop/staff interact with customers?
- What will the culture of your shop look like, and how will that play out in employees’ lives?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ve created a roadmap between your present and your future.
If a vision statement sets out a generic goal that anyone can agree with, it is likely to produce mediocre results. A goal like ‘delivering an exceptional experience’ applies equally to a restaurant, bank, or fitness club.
Writing a Good Vision Statement
Vision statements can be challenging to draft.
An effective vision statement is:
Aspirational in that it’s about your goals. Once you achieve your vision, you’ll need to write a new vision statement.
Inspirational in that it provides life and direction to your day-to-day work (the root of the word “inspiration” relates to breathing life into things).
Motivational in that it provides a reason for the work you do.
Think about your shop.
What direction do you want it to go?
Incorporate the dreams you had when you started your business.
- Be Concise: It should be simple, easy to read and cut the fat so that it can be set to memory and be repeated accurately.
- Be Clear: A good rule of thumb for clarity is to focus on one primary goal, rather than trying to fill the document with a scattering of ideas. One clear objective is also easier to focus on and achieve.
- Make it Future-Oriented: The vision statement is not what the shop is presently engaged in but rather a future objective where the shop plans to be. (5+ yrs)
- Be Stable: The vision statement is a long-term goal that should, ideally, not be affected by the market or technological changes.
- Be Challenging: Your objective shouldn’t be too easy to achieve, but also it shouldn’t be so unrealistic that it gets tossed out.
- Be Abstract: The vision statement should be general enough to capture the organization’s interests and strategic direction.
- Be Inspiring: Live up to the title of the document, and create something that will rally the troops and be desirable as a goal for A vision statement is the anchor point of any strategic plan. It outlines what the shop would like to ultimately achieve and gives purpose to the existence of it. A good vision statement should be short, simple, specific to your business, leave nothing open to interpretation. It should also have some ambition.
A vision statement is the anchor point of any strategic plan. It outlines what an organization would like to ultimately achieve and gives purpose to the existence of the organization. A good vision statement should be short, simple, specific to your business, leave nothing open to interpretation. It should also have some ambition.
Let’s start off by reminding ourselves of what our end-game looks like in terms of our finished plan:
Writing a vision statement for your business is a daunting task. For one thing, it must define your company and, more importantly, its future. For another, you don’t want it to be relegated to a forgotten poster hanging in the shops’ showroom.
A powerful vision statement stays with you, such as Disney’s “to make people happy” or Instagram’s “capture and share the world’s moments.” If you are intentional in your efforts and committed to doing the hard work, you can create a vision statement that encapsulates your organization’s core ideals and provides a roadmap to where it wants to go.
Regardless of how many years you have been in business or how long you have had your vision statement, you are not stuck with it.
Your vision statement should be a constant reminder to you and your team that the end goal is bigger than the everyday. This message is an important one to hold on to, especially on the most difficult days.
Start Your Engine
- What do we want our shop to look/feel like? Culture? Spirit? Mood? ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Where are we going? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What can we realistically achieve? __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What words or phrases depict the type of shop and end-goals we want? __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What are we known for?_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What will your shop never do?__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Who is our customer? Avatar your customer. Get each of your staff to do this. (This was a good one at my shop) __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What are our goals? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What services do we provide for our customers?__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- How do we make our customer’s lives better? _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What is the culture of our shop? ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Why will individuals want to become part of our community? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Why will people want to work for our shop? _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Your vision statement describes how the world will look if you achieve your mission. Think aspirationally here, and describe the ideal end state. _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What role in the community do we want the shop to play? _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What is the idealized future state we want to create? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- How will people live differently if our shop is successful? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Vision statement possibilities:
Final vision statement: ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Google: “To provide access to the world’s information in one click.”
Amazon: “To be Earth’s most customer-centric company where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.”
LinkedIn: “Create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce.”
Oxfam: “A world without poverty.”
IKEA: “To create a better everyday life for the many people.”