People empower the vision

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[vimeo id="118039454"] We’ve all heard that famous Proverb that says, “Without a vision the people perish.” It’s a very inspirational quote for all leaders. It forces us to think through what our organization needs or where it needs to go. Recently, I read Mark Sanborn’s blog where he turned around the quote and said, “Without people, the vision perishes.” I thought this was such a great reminder about how often leaders can forget that it is about the people and not about the leader.

Ultimately it’s the people of an organization that empower the leader. Without the people, there really is no momentum to carry out the vision. I think leaders can often forget about the fact that the vision really is for the people. Mark reminds us to make sure that our vision is grounded in a solid way and posed some questions that we, as leaders, can ask our team in order to test our vision.  I’ll share them with you along with my thoughts.

First, do you know what our vision is? This might seem like no brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people have no idea what direction the organization is moving. If people don’t know the vision, they can’t take ownership of it. That’s why leaders have to constantly communicate and live the vision they want to see. In others words, they must be the gist to own the idea.

Second, did you have a part in creating the vision? Leaders who don’t involve the people in the vision creation are shooting themselves in the leg. If the people have no say in the vision, they have no stake in the organization. They have no reason to support the direction. Leaders who involve the people will empower them to achieve it.

Third, does the vision set you on a path to where you want to be? If people have a say in the creation process, this question will be less relevant. However, if people are communicating the fact that they don’t like the direction, it’s time to pause and reflect. Again, the people need to have bought in the idea and destination before they’ll work to achieve it. Make sure you’re setting the direction where they want to be.

Fourth, is decision-making easier for you because of the vision. Often if people don’t have an idea of where the organization is headed, it’s harder to make decisions. Our vision should be birthed from our values. If our values drive our vision then our decisions will align with who we want to become. At Southeastern we’re student focused. It’s among our core values. Before we commit to a decision, we make sure that we understand that it will benefit our students. All members of the organization should be aware of the vision, so that their decisions become streamlined.

Thanks for checking out my blog. I hope I’ve encouraged you in your leadership. If you have any follow up thoughts or questions please feel free to respond below. Have a great day!