Tag Archive for: Jim Collins

Making Vision Portable

Ever been part of a company or church organization and you’ve quietly asked yourself, what is the vision here? What are we trying to accomplish? In more times than not, if you are asking yourself that question, probably other people are asking it too.

When people say the name of your church or business, what is the first thing they think of? If people are having a hard time explaining the organization’s vision – than vision is not sticking. Andy Stanley, pastor of North Point Community Church, Atlanta, GA, says, “For vision to stick it must be portable, memorable and motivational.”

When you think of Nike, what is the first thing that comes to your mind? Just Do It. Phil Knight, the founder and CEO of Nike suffused his company culture along with their advertising campaign with the idea of the intense, inwardly focused competitor. The “Just Do It” campaign captured the Nike’s corporate philosophy of grit, determination and passion. Why? Because it was portable, memorable and motivational.

In prior years, we watched the national election campaigns. What was Barack Obama’s platform and vision for America? Change We Can Believe In. What was John McCain’s? I really can’t remember it, do you? What was Hillary Clinton’s? Don’t remember hers either. But all of us can remember Obama’s vision and campaign platform. Whether you agree or disagree with Obama’s politics is beside the point, because in the end, the Obama campaign made their vision portable, memorable and motivational.

How do you make vision portable?

1. Focus Your Vision – It’s been said, “If you can’t manage it, you can’t measure it.” Just because you have a nice slogan on your website, business card or banner doesn’t mean your organization has a thriving vision. If you look at what some organizations are doing and measure it against their claims, what you’ll find is often inconsistency. You can manage and measure focused vision, but not unfocused vision. Too many church and business organizations are doing too little by doing way too much. Jim Collins in his book, Good to Great referenced the ancient Greek parable of “The Fox and the Hedgehog.” Day after day, the cunning fox plans his attack on the unsuspected hedgehog. No matter how creative the fox is, the hedgehog always wins. Why? The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog only knows one big thing. Each time the fox attacks; the hedgehog simply rolls up into a ball of sharp spikes, creating an impenetrable defense. It’s what he does best. So, I ask you, what can you be the best at? The only way to create a focused vision is by focusing on the few things that you do very well. Identifying and strengthening what you are good at will help create that focused vision. Always remember, Less is More.

2. Cast Your Vision – Casting vision is a never-ending responsibility for any leader. Just when you think your vision has been casted enough, cast it one more time! But cast it strategically. Define what your vision is and who and what it is supposed to effect. Just when you think you’ve thoroughly explained the vision, it’s time to start over and communicate it again. You can never over communicate your vision.

3. Celebrate Your Vision – Develop a process systemically within your organization to celebrate your vision in its successes. Rejoice with your team when someone makes a home run for your organization.  Reward those who live-out the vision. Celebrating vision is simply reminding people where you are going by pointing out real life examples of individuals on your team that’s driving your vision forward.

At the end of the day, vision doesn’t become portable, memorable and motivational just because of a fancy slogan or a slick advertising campaign. Vision becomes portable by the way you focus it, cast it and celebrate it. When vision is portable it becomes contagious! That is my prayer for you and your organizations’ that you will lead with contagious vision.

Your Thoughts?

Quotes that Dramatically Changed My Thinking

These are quotes from leaders that helped dramatically change my thinking. My goal is to frame each quote and hang in my office one day. So I will be reminded every day why we do what we do to build Kingdom minded people within the church and in the marketplace.

“Be stubborn with your vision, but be flexible with your plans.”
– Andy Stanley
Pastor of North Point Community Church

“To reach people nobody else is reaching, you’ll have to do things that nobody else is doing.”
– Craig Groeschel
Pastor of LifeChurch.tv

“The next generation product almost never comes from the previous generation.”
– Al Ries
Marketing Strategist
Ries & Ries Firm

“What do I believe is impossible to do in my field…but if it could be done would fundamentally change my business?”
–    Joel Barker
Best-selling author of Future Edge

“People establish a gut-level connection with a person based on their values and perception long before they buy into the person’s message.”
–    Phil Cooke
Best-selling author of Branding Faith

“Everyone is never going to like me…no matter what I say or do someone will always be pissed at me.  That is why I am through wearing myself out in the hopes that everyone will understand and affirm me.  I have ONE master…His name is Jesus…His opinion matters…and I am through tuning out His voice for fear that others may misunderstand and take shots at me.”
–    Perry Noble
Pastor of New Spring Church

“In the minds of great managers, consistent poor performance is not primarily a matter of weakness, stupidity, disobedience, or disrespect. It is a matter of miscasting.”
–    Marcus Buckingham
Best-selling author of Now, Discover Your Strengths

First figure out your partners, then figure out what ideas to pursue. The most important thing isn’t the market you target, the product you develop or the financing, but the founding team.
–    Jim Collins
Best-selling author of Good to Great

“God is preparing you for what He’s preparing for you.”
–    Steven Furtick
Pastor of Elevation Church

“Leaders can do anything, but they can’t do everything.”
–    Tim Elmore
Best-selling author of Habitudes