Vision Statement: Your business plan is a guide to how you envision your company operating. While there are many components to a business plan, your mission and vision statements basically sum up where you are and where you plan on going.
It’s easy to get the two confused. The WHO, WHAT, and WHY of the organization are embodied in its mission and the WHERE is outlined in the vision.
Many business owners frequently overlook how crucial it is to define their organization’s vision. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that approximately 20% of new businesses fail during the first two years of being open, 45% during the first five years, and 65% during the first 10 years. They fail because of problems with their business plan. They fail because their vision isn’t clear.
If you don’t have a vision statement, you need one. Let’s take a look at what it is, what makes it powerful, and how to write your own.
A vision statement articulates your brand’s aspirational “vision” for the future.
A vision statement should be capable of inspiring and encouraging others to support a notion or idea. It can set a benchmark and offer a point of reference, direction, and the organization’s desired state after a certain number of years. Setting a vision has two goals: first, it helps the organization develop a long-term strategy for its future, and second, it unites everyone on that path.
Your company’s vision should be motivating while also supporting the mission of the organization. The following qualities should be present in a vision statement:
Aspirational and Ambitious: Your vision statement should be aspirational and showcase how your business will grow in the future. Tell your employees and customers where you’d like to be in the coming years.
Practical and Achievable: Set a goal that is challenging but not impractical.
General: To include all of your brand’s overarching objectives, your vision should be sufficiently broad. Consider it as a roof over which your company’s mission statement and goals can be nested.
The timeframe for the vision statement should typically be between five and ten years. There are a few things that leaders need to address when developing a vision.
For example, Advent Trinity’s vision statement is “Change the world through innovation and inspire businesses to grow.” It aligns with our mission statement: “It’s our mission to provide business owners with the tips, tools, and strategies needed to be successful in growing their company. We must be adaptable, responsive, collective, and reliable to and with our clients for the success of their growth. We must provide top results for Web Design, SEO, and Social Media Marketing.” While also reflecting our values: transparency, persistence, mutual trust, and integrity.
Our partners at HubSpot have compiled a list of vision statements. Here are a few of our favorites:
Teach for America: One day, all children in this nation will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education.
Teach for America creates a network of leaders to provide equal education opportunities to children in need. This organization’s day-to-day work includes helping marginalized students receive the proper education they otherwise wouldn’t have access to. Its vision statement is what it hopes to see through its efforts — a nation where no child is left behind.
LinkedIn: Create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce.
LinkedIn is a professional networking service that gives people the opportunity to seek employment. Its vision statement intends to provide employees of every level a chance to get the job they need.
Dunkin’: To be always the desired place for great coffee beverages and delicious complementary doughnuts & bakery products to enjoy with family and friends.
Notice the interesting use of the word “complementary” in this vision statement. No, the chain isn’t envisioning giving out freebies in the future. Its vision goes beyond remaining a large coffee chain. Rather, the brand wants to be the consummate leader in the coffee and donut industry. It wants to become a place known for fun, food, and recreation.
Customer loyalty is influenced by brand values more than you might realize. The next purchase a customer makes may be determined by how well your company communicates with and connects with its target market on an emotional level.
Having a vision statement shows the people that interact with your brand that you have a purpose and plan on being in their lives for the foreseeable future. It also helps keep your company motivated to succeed.