Guest post by Genevieve from Lightbox SF.
When I use the term vision I mean more than just having an idea of how much money you want to bring in or a clear description of your product or service. These are definitely part of the equation, but you should also be clear on your overall mission, what the business stands for, what your ideal role is, and the details of the business that you just wont compromise on. Taking the time to describe the larger vision for your business is like drawing yourself a roadmap to the future. It not only sets up goals for you to work toward, but it gives you a framework that helps guide the choices you make each day. Working on your business without having a vision of what it will be like in 1, 2 or even 5 years is like getting in the car and driving with no destination in mind. You might have amazing experiences and visit great places, but you still wont be any closer to where youre going.
Your vision is the best possible future of your business, the big picture with all the details filled in.
What types of employees do you want or do you even want any? Do you want to make everything by hand or will you manufacture multiple items or even whole lines? Does your business keep running when you take a vacation or does it shut down for a week or two?
By imagining and sketching out the big picture, the incredible dream of your creative business, youve given yourself something to live up to and work toward.
Having a clear vision allows you to take ownership of the choices that need to be made in an entirely different way. Instead of wondering if a particular project is right to take on you can measure it against your larger vision. Does it fit in? Instead of feeling beat down that sales arent quite what you want them to be, you look to your target market and ask how you can serve them better. A vision brings focus and clarity to whats really important and the short-term goals become clearer when you know what it is youre striving for.
So how do you come up with a vision?
You need to give yourself time to daydream and ask yourself whats really important.
Take action now: Set aside 30-60 minutes with no distractions and start by picking a specific point in time for your vision. Make it at least 1 year in the future and as far ahead as 5. Then answer these questions with as much detail as you can:
- What motivates you to make this business work?
- What are you or your business known for?
- How do you measure success?
- What is the most important thing you offer your clients?
- Whats your role in the business?
- What do other people say about your business?
Now designate one task you can do next week to get you one step closer to this vision.
image Thinking by Tosya