Realising talent ...
... through individual and collective development

A Conversation on Vision, Mission and Values

What this is about and why it is critical to organisational success

1. Vision

In organisational life it is important for all stakeholders to have a clear picture of where they are 'travelling', and to share a vision of success. When organisations achieve this shared vision, stakeholders are more likely to commit to working together towards a common future, rather than drift in many directions, or remain stuck in the past.

Creating a vision is often aspirational, taking people's minds and imagination into the future, creating a sense of purpose and direction. Yet it is also critical to agreeing a statement around who we are as a group, what we do, who we do it for, and why we are doing it within our organization, business unit, team or work group. To answer these questions is to define our mission together.

2. Mission

One of the reasons for lack of commitment in groups is because they are not clear about their mission. They are not clear about what their business is; what they are supposed to do, who they art supposed to do it for, or why it is important that they do it at all. When people have differing understandings of their mission, they tend to work at cross purposes with each other, often quite unintentionally.

It is also important to realize that a work group's or a total organization's mission continually evolves as the external environment changes.

When the world changes around us, it requires different responses from us. How we produced and delivered our products and services last year may not be adequate or effective this year. Not only how we do it, but what products and services we provide and to whom we provide them may need to change. This means that our fundamental mission changes.

Constantly evolving missions is a reality in a constantly changing world.

To stay abreast or ahead of the change - to know when we need to redefine our mission and to know how we need to revise our operating systems to ensure quality and customer satisfaction in the future - this requires the ability to understand the present and to envision the future.

3. Values

And then there are values that inform 'what's acceptable around here.' They underpin attitudes and behaviour and must be aligned to vision and mission. Organisational processes such as recruitment, appraisal, people development, remuneration, must be aligned to the values. Leaders at all levels set the standard and actively promote the values in all aspects of the business. Values set the boundaries and assist an organisation in achieving community of purpose towards achieving its goals.

Summary

In the pursuit of performance excellence a key question for leaders to ask is how can we ensure common meaning and understanding within our organisation, stakeholder group or team? Achieving common vision is perhaps the critical starting point. Then comes shared mission - short, medium and long-term, underpinned by shared values.

Equilearn offers a facilitated conversational approach to achieving a vision, mission, and values review. We use a portfolio of tools in this process - senior leader interviews, questionnaires, focus group interviews and mini workshops - to assist organisations in the challenge of achieving on-going clarity around these issues; of negotiating stakeholder buy-in as part of the critical process of keeping current, nimble, energised and forward moving.

Learn more: or call +44 (0) 20 7736 7878

<< back