12 – The Importance of Vision

foggy road

“Vision leads the leader. It paints the target. It sparks and fuels the fire within. Show me a leader without vision, and I'll show you someone who isn't going anywhere.  John C. Maxwell

Martin Luther King Jr. inspired people from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial because he painted a picture of what the future could be like. Big visions bring big commitments whilst lifting people out of the monotony of their everyday, humdrum lives and put them in a new world filled with opportunity, hope and challenge.
A vision can involve millions of people or it can be very personal.
So why is vision so important?
Imagine you are driving your car down along the autobahn in Germany. One where there are still no speed limits and you have a lot of horses under the power of your right foot.
It's a beautiful, crystal clear day and you can see the road ahead for many miles… how fast would you go?
On the other side of a tunnel you whizz through is a thick blanket of fog. You can just about see the end of the car bonnet. The road ahead is straight, well according to the map it is straight. You haven't seen another vehicle on the road for many miles. So you keep the pedal to the floor and continue on your journey… ?
When you can't see where you are going, you slow down.
The same is true in your life, career and business. Without a vision of the future, you will go slower. Indeed, without a vision ahead, you may well be going the wrong way entirely.
But it is not just having a vision. Sorry if you've been sucked in by Rhonda Byrne's “The Secret” – having a vision is critical and so is achieving results. It's simply untrue that all you need to do is dream big dreams about the future and they will happen. You actually do have to do something to achieve them and get results.
And it's worth while planning and organising yourself to get some smaller quick wins early. The more results you get on your journey, the more sustainable your success will be.
sustainable success
The matrix here shows clearly how vision and results combine to create the success you want. No vision, and no results… in theory you stay where you are, in practice you already know, you go backwards. A compelling vision and few results means that you will abort the vision. Good results without a vision will become unsustainable. Only when you have both a big vision and high achievement of results (many small wins), does success become sustainable.