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Vision Statement

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A vision statement starts with imagining what your business can be.

What's your vision for your small business?

Image (c) Tim Robberts / Getty Images
Definition:

A vision statement is sometimes called a picture of your company in the future but it’s so much more than that. Your vision statement is your inspiration, the framework for all your strategic planning.

What you are doing when creating a vision statement is articulating your dreams and hopes for your business. It reminds you of what you are trying to build.

A vision statement may apply to an entire company or to a single division of that company. Whether for all or part of an organization, the vision statement answers the question, "Where do we want to go?"

Don’t confuse a vision statement with a road map; it's not. What Bill Gates envisioned when he first started Microsoft was a personal computer in every home and business, not a series of steps for making that happen.

That's why it's important when crafting a vision statement to let your imagination go and dare to dream - and why it's important that a vision statement captures your passion.

Why Having a Vision Statement is So Important for Your Small Business

But while a vision statement doesn't tell you how you're going to get there, it does set the direction for your business planning. That makes crafting a vision statement especially compelling for small businesses because the main reason small businesses fail is because of poor planning.

(For more on the role of your vision statement in business planning, see Quick-Start Business Planning.)

How Does a Vision Statement Differ From a Mission Statement?

Unlike the mission statement, a vision statement is for you and the other members of your company, not for your customers or clients.

When writing a vision statement, your mission statement and your core competencies can be a valuable starting point for articulating your values. Be sure when you're creating one not to fall into the trap of only thinking ahead a year or two. Once you have one, your vision statement will have a huge influence on decision making and the way you allocate resources.

Learn how to write a vision statement for your small business.

Then learn how to use your vision statement to create an action plan that will help you make the vision you have of your business a reality.

Common Misspellings:

Vison statement, vishun statement.

Examples:

A vision statement for a company offering whale watching tours: Within the next five years, ZZZ Tours will become the premier eco-tour company in ________, increasing revenues to 1 million dollars in 2014 by becoming internationally known for the comfort and excitement of the whale-watching tours it offers.

Related Video
How to Create a Mission Statement

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