What will the Future Version of Your Organisation Look Like?
There is often confusion about what constitutes a goal and what makes the vision in an organisation. This is discussed in a separate article – click here to read more. For the purpose of this article, we will assume that they are both aspirational and the primary difference is one of timescales. Goals will tend to be shorter term (up to 5 years) while a vision is longer-term (over 5 years).
They both define where you want the organisation to be and what you want it to look like at some point in the future. The father into the future you look, the less defined it will be since it will be more aspirational and less grounded in today’s ‘world’.
When developing goals and vision with and organisation, people often focus on where they are today and simply extrapolate that to the future. This can be limiting and counter-productive. When envisioning the future for your organisation, your thinking should not be limited by your current situation. We always encourage participants to ignore their preconceptions about what is possible and think about what they would like their organisation to look like in the future.
In addition, your goals and vision should be aligned with your organisation’s purpose and values. If you don’t have a genuine purpose, supported by clear values then you should consider our Purpose Driven Organisation Programme.
Sometimes creating truly visionary goals is about not just thinking outside the box but thinking about a totally different box! An example of this is SpaceX. They created the goal/vision of having a reusable rocket that could be sent into space and returned to earth to be used again. At the time this goal was set they understood that this would revolutionise the process delivering cargo (including humans) into space, dramatically reducing costs and making it more accessible to many more organisations. Here, they are not thinking outside the box, they are creating an entirely new box. In addition, they had no idea how they were going to achieve it but had enough faith in their vision that they put the right team together to create the technology that they needed to achieve it.
History shows many more examples of how this visionary thinking has changed the world. You don’t have to change the world but you can change they way that your work and you can create a market that does not currently exist. We take it for granted today but when Amazon first introduced an on-line store it was revolutionary and effectively created a new market.
Our process has been designed to encourage people to contribute their ideas about what the organisation may look like in the future. We do this by creating an environment where people feel safe and where they feel that their ideas and observations have value. Ultimately our aim is to build consensus about the future of the organisation. This is a critical element of creating and successfully implementing a robust strategic plan.