As Peter Senge points out in the Fifth Discipline, when there’s no shared vision within a company, there’s no common identity or goal amongst the employees. As employees, we can see this lack of vision. Division objectives are set without taking into account operational capability and efficiencies. Departmental goals are disjointed accomplishing an improvement here or there, but the general state of the company remains the same. This creates a negative feedback loop where commitment and enrollment degrade into compliance where people do just what they have to to get a paycheck. In a company where there is no shared vision, there are silos of information and top management unconcerned or at least minimally concerned for the operation. Change management becomes short-sighted and focuses on correcting issues and problem solving in lieu of creating an outcome everyone shares in creating. In this environment, people do share one thing. They share a sense of powerlessness.
What does this have to do with the business of you? Shared vision comes about from individuals communicating their personal vision and collaborating to achieve it. Shared vision starts with individuals knowing what they truly want and developing their own vision. Having a vision for our lives gives something to direct our activities towards. It’s the basis of our intention. It aligns our long-term strategic objectives, short-term tactical goals as well as our day-to-day targeted activities. Observing ourselves in the present provides feedback into our system letting us adapt to make ourselves more effective and efficient in creating our vision. A vision we truly want to make happen breathes life into our daily activities by allowing us to see how our actions support it. Our personal vision is a force to be reckoned with.