Planning to Plan: Aligning Purpose Through the Vision Story

Vision

In the introduction to my “Planning to Plan” series, I proposed that leaders ask themselves a few tough questions about this year’s plan:

  • Did we have a clear, compelling and attainable vision of what we wanted to accomplish?
  • Did our team truly and deeply believe in what we were doing, and why?
  • Did we clearly identify our priorities, and what was “out of bounds”?
  • Did we encourage our critical thinkers to think critically, and help us face the brutal facts?
  • Did our team buy in to an actionable plan that addressed their constraints?
  • Did our entire team review and adapt the plan throughout the year?

Today, let’s talk about a key foundational component of any good plan: a clear, compelling and attainable vision. One could write a whole book on developing and articulating a vision (and I may do that!), but let’s stick to the basics here.

In the context of business and organizational planning, what is “the vision”, where does it come from, and how do we maximize its value?

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Planning to Plan

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As you think about what worked (and what didn’t) for your team in 2015, and how to achieve more in 2016, ask yourself some tough questions:

  • Did we have a clear, compelling and attainable vision of what we wanted to accomplish?
  • Did our team truly and deeply believe in what we were doing, and why?
  • Did we clearly identify our priorities, and what was “out of bounds”?
  • Did we encourage our critical thinkers to think critically, and help us face the brutal facts?
  • Did our team buy in to an actionable plan that addressed their constraints?
  • Did our entire team review and adapt the plan throughout the year?

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Why Team Consensus Matters

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I have quite a few conversations about the role of a facilitator, and participatory leadership. One topic frequently comes up: “Paul, why do you use this word ‘consensus’ all the time, when we’re never going to get everyone to agree? A strong leader’s role is to make decisions and drive a team forward to success, even when everyone doesn’t agree.” Or something along those lines. It’s a valid question.

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Let’s get aligned

PaulWAHeadshotHi. I’m Paul, and I’m on a journey. I hope you’ll join me.

Every day, I see people and organizations who aren’t as happy or as effective as they could be. The details of their challenges are always different. But I’ve begun to realize that their situations almost always share at least one root cause… lack of alignment.

Alignment? Like, on a car? Or what a chiropractor does?

Well, maybe partially. But what I’m really talking about is alignment of all of the things needed to support success and happiness.

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