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Chapter Two - Vision

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"A Vision statement expresses the aspirations of the organization. It identifies the direction of the organization, what it hopes to become, and the principles it will follow to achieve its goals. It should encompass the core beliefs and values of the organization."
Andrew J. Harvey and Raymond E. Foster (Leadership: Texas Hold 'em Style).

Vision Exercise

As an exercise in understanding how to develop a vision for your organization, first download a copy of our Vision Checklist.  Using the checklist, review these organizations' visions.  Download the exercise here!

YesUp Ecommerce Solutions
Our goal is straightforward: To create simplicity from complexity by delivering innovative solutions that will serve the demands of today while anticipating and fulfilling the needs of tomorrow. Technology is growing at an unparalleled rate and YesUp brings vast experience to the world of interactive programming and broadcast graphic design. We deliver clean, multi-tiered, e-commerce interaction among in-house database systems and can design and develop competitively-priced systems that utilize supply chain integration and activity-based personalization. And if your needs are simpler, we can produce something as straightforward as a powerful presentation for website and software development firms performing quality commercial work.

Maryland Govenor's Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
ODHH believes that all Maryland citizens who are deaf or hard of hearing should have equal and full access to resources, services and opportunities for participation in all aspects of community life through the provision of appropriate accommodations.

Indiana State Police
The ISP will be the premier law enforcement agency in the country. We will be guided by three immutable values: Integrity, Service, and Professionalism. In order to foster respect, creativity, teamwork and diversity, individual employees will be given the authority, latitude and responsibility associated with an empowered work force. Problem solving, crime reduction, traffic safety, and police service will be approached with unwavering consistency--100% effort, 100% of the time. The best available technology will be utilized in accomplishing our mission. State and federal laws will be enforced fairly, honestly, and impartially. We will communicate with the public, other governmental agencies, and among ourselves in an open, candid, respectful and professional manner.

United States Army
The Nation has entrusted the Army with preserving its peace and freedom, defending its democracy, and providing opportunities for its Soldiers to serve the country and personally develop their skills and citizenship. Consequently, we are and will continuously strive to remain among the most respected institutions in the United States. To fulfill our solemn obligation to the Nation, we must remain the preeminent land power on earth-the ultimate instrument of national resolve; strategically dominant on the ground where our Soldiers' engagements are decisive.

United Wood Treating Company
United Wood Treating Company was formed in July of 1988 in response to the growing demand for quality CCA treated poles and piles. We hare fortunate to have a staff of veterans from the wood treatment industry with well over 50 years of combined experience.  Our Company is founded on a commitment of quality, service, and reliability to our customers. Our extensive supplier base provides us with a steady flow of raw material and gives us the ability to respond to special orders. Our local government assisted funding insures county support and cooperation. Small cities within 20 miles provide a solid work force, while the rural setting allows for United Wood's future expansion. All of these aspects combined yield service to you, our customer, as well as reliability on which you can count. We plan to serve your needs for many years and we invite your suggestions. Please make plans to visit our facility in the near future and see our commitment for yourself.

Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation
Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation aims to be a successful enterprise trusted by all our stakeholders and contributing to social progress through business activities that emphasize value creation through high-tech solutions. We are committed to open, transparent, and reliable business practices. As we continue to grow, we will value the environmental responsibility and strive to build a prosperous community, fulfilling our social responsibility and contributing as a corporate citizen with passion and pride in our work.This basic philosophy is the foundation of our corporate vision, a vision that defines our future directions and articulates concepts that all our employees should share and emulate. The Hitachi High-Technologies Corporate Vision: To consistently aim to be Global Top in high-tech solutions.

Auburn University
Auburn University will emerge as one of the nation's preeminent comprehensive land-grant universities in the 21st century. Central to all its functions will be the University's historic commitment of service to all Alabamians as the State becomes a part of a global society with all of its challenges and opportunities. The University will be widely recognized for the quality of its undergraduate, graduate and professional educational programs, the effectiveness of its research and outreach programs and the broad access to the University provided through the innovative use of information technology. The University will ensure the quality of its programs through the careful focusing of its resources in areas of institutional strengths. One constant will remain unchanged at the University--that intangible quality Auburn men and women call the "Auburn Spirit."
 
Toyota
Through "Monozukuri - manufacturing of value - added products" and "technological innovation," Toyota is helping to create a more prosperous society. To achieve this, we are taking up challenge in below themes.  (1) Be a driving force in global regeneration by implementing the most advanced environmental technologies. (2) Create automobiles and a motorized society in which people can live safely, securely and comfortably. (3) Promote the advantages of cars throughout the world and attract more Toyota fans. (4) Be a truly global company that is trusted and respected by all people around the world.

Examine your Organization's Vision

Now that you have had a chance to explore the vision statements of other organizations, download our Vision Checklist and make notes on your organization's vision.  Download the Vision Check List Here!

Articles on Leadership, Organizational Vision and Leadership

Corporate Vision, Mission, Goals and Strategies: Traditional and New Approaches to Corporate Vision and Strategic Intent Formulation and Use
Corporate vision is a short, succinct, and inspiring statement of what the organization intends to become and to achieve at some point in the future, often stated in competitive terms. Vision refers to the category of intentions that are broad, all-inclusive and forward-thinking. It is the image that a business must have of its goals before it sets out to reach them. It describes aspirations for the future, without specifying the means that will be used to achieve those desired ends.
Read on

DEVELOPING CORPORATE VISION
In today's competitive environment, companies not only need to outperform their competitors, but also to communicate, both internally and externally, a distinctive sense of purpose and direction. A carefully constructed Corporate Vision provides leadership with a top-down framework within which strategy, organisation and systems can be developed, and is invaluable for motivating key executives and staff at all levels.
READ MORE

The 11 Required Elements of A Successful Vision
There is a lot of talk about maintaining a vision, especially as part of a CEO's job. In my opinion, vision is one of those terms that is both greatly overused and largely misunderstood. Many people consider vision to be an all encompassing view of the product, others will expand its meaning to include the entire market and still others believe the term encompasses far more. Without a clear vision you will not get angel investors or venture capital of any kind. This needs to be done first and presenting to any investor before this is properly flushed out is the most common mistake of new entrepreneurs. They burn their chances of getting money or referrals 90% of the time by getting in front of people too early.
READ MORE

Developing a Leadership Philosophy
It is a memorable day. The sun is shinning, there is a gentle breeze that causes the flags and their campaign ribbons to rustle, and the soldiers are standing tall in formation. A time-honored tradition is about to take placea change of command. The orders are read, the colors are passed and a new leader takes charge of the organization. More often than not, however, there are no formal ceremonies when an officer takes over a new position, yet the first order of business is always the samethe discussion of a leadership philosophy, usually accompanied by a "philosophy document." This "philosophy" ostensibly allows the supporting staff and soldiers to understand the leaders inner thoughts, beliefs and expectations for organizational performance.
READ MORE
 

The Role of Leadership in Sustaining School Reform: Voices From the Field
According to participants, sustaining reform requires that educational leaders have a clear vision of the kind of school they want to have and operate consistently according to values and beliefs tied to that vision. These leaders seldom claim to have invented the vision or the underlying values and beliefs; instead, they perceive themselves to be "keepers of the dream." They embrace it whole-heartedly and make sure that everyone else does too. As one leader from Kentucky said:  Having a vision, knowing what your purpose is, is really important. When we started, it was a rocky road for us. The leaders knew what the school had to be, but a lot of people had baggage that made it hard to get there. Fortunately, some people had tenacity, commitment, and vision.
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American Diplomatic Leadership in the 21st Century: Values, Vision and Action
Values are only part of leadership. Leadership also requires vision and action. What is the vision of American leadership in the world today? During the Cold War, our vision was crystal clear. The essence of international politics was a primordial struggle to defend freedom on a global scale from the threat of totalitarian, communist regimes; containment was the strategy. The end of the Cold War a decade and a half ago meant that we needed to rethink the way we viewed the world, how we interacted with other countries and how we tackled global problems.
READ MORE

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Web-based resources

Strategic Leadership Studies - Leadership Teaching Tools

Human Performance Center - Leadership and Learning

The Art and Science of Leadership

Education Leadership Tool Kit: Change and Technology in America's Schools

Leader to Leader Institute

Wharton Center for Leadership and Change Management

Leadership Knowledge Base
 

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