One of the core tenets of Influential Leadership is their visionary approach to an organization. Influential Leaders have realized an envisioned future of the organization that is a promise of prosperity, performance, leadership and excellence. So what exactly is an Envisioned Future?
In 1996, Harvard Business Review released an article titled, “Building Your Company’s Vision” by James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras. The authors postulated that an enduring vision for a company will exit through change and upheaval and provide individuals and teams in the organization with a future to strive for. The Vision of an organization is broken into two principles: Core Ideology and Envisioned Future.
Almost every organization has a mission, vision and values. Some are better than others and some have endured for over 100 years. Core Ideology includes two components: Core Values and Core Purpose
The Core Values of an organization are what is often referred to as the “culture” of the organization. Values are enduring tenets of an organization that do not change, really ever, and are designed to align a long-term vision of the future. The tenets are fundamentals that guide the business and are 2-3 values such as the pursuit of innovation or exceptional customer service. If there are more than 2-3 values then they tend toward operational behaviors that can be attached elsewhere in the organization. For example, Integrity is a value of how you operate, not necessarily a value for the long term vision and purpose of the business. Integrity is a series of actions, exceptional customer service is a state of mind. Growth Mindset is a state of mind that is baked into company operating values. But the Core Values are broad in that exceptional customer service could be delivering that service in a variety of businesses and services with the continuous emphasis of delighting customers.
The Core Purpose for the company clarifies the reason for the organization to exist. The Purpose is aligned to the values and may be something like, “We will fundamentally alter American Leadership in the world.” Your organization purpose is clear and opens you to multiple pathways to achieve your purpose. The Core Values and Core Purpose together are the Ideology of the business – who we are and what we are striving to do. They provide short term and long-term guidance. They provide the foundation of ethical performance. They provide the mission of profit contribution and the work that is and is not aligned to the organization. The purpose is an enduring charge to an organization and should exist for a foreseen timeline beyond multiple cycles of people owning and operating the organization.
The Envisioned Future is the power and influence of an Influential Leader. The Envisioned Future is the end game of the Influential Leader’s vision. The envisioned future is the future state that the Influential leader seeks to attain and comes with a huge goal and a compelling statement that describes the outcome of that goal referred to as a vivid description.
“We will become the foremost authority on the development of Influential Leadership in American organizations that will lead a renaissance of American leadership across the globe in education, manufacturing, public service, business and government.”
The Envisioned Future is a powerful statement that the Influential Leader uses to instill a greater sense of purpose in the organization. it is exciting, it is clear, it is actionable and achievable through collaboration and effort. The pinnacle of our industry and the seminal change that people will talk about for generations and impact the quality of others lives. It is uplifting, monumental and purposefully audacious. The envisioned future is hope, strategy and vision aligned against the company core ideology. It is the tool that separates the Influential Leader from the rest of the crowd and gives them the authority and permission to lead.
What do you think?