Way back in 1960, a dignified non-white gentleman was tasked to skipper a cricket team that comprised players like Sobers, Hunte, Kanhai, Solomon, Butcher, Wesley Hall among others. It was the first time that a non-white became the captain of the West Indies team because only a white man could become the official leader of a Caribbean team. The legendary British commentator and scribe Sir John Arlott asked the suave non-white captain how he felt and what was his vision for the future.
Sir Frank Mortimer Maglin Worrell, the non-white captain, gave a classic reply to Arlott's question, ' Mr Arlott, you see a bunch of extraordinary players at my disposal. My vision is to make West Indies a super-duper team and for that, every member will have to work in a synchronised and cohesive manner with only one objective that his talent will be streamlined into the greater welfare of the team.'
Needless to say, his vision came true and West Indies became the toast of cricket lovers all over the world.
Now what he said can be telescoped into organizational context: The ability to think about or plan the future with imagination or wisdom is vision.
It's interesting to note that vision came from the Greek word 'Vise' (connoting 'SIXTH SENSE'). It sounds similar to 'WISE' because V/W arelabio-dental and pronounced almost similarly. In other words, 'VISION' is a WISE game-plan or template to build the future on. It's a wise leader's SIXTH SENSE to envisage (same root as that of 'Vise') the future and work accordingly!
Before vision is envisioned, it's in the fitness of things to mention the vision statement of an organization as well:
An aspirational description of what an organization would like to achieve or accomplish in the mid-term or long-term future. It is intended to serve as a clear guide for choosing current and future courses of action.
Any vision or dream comes to nothing if it's not planned in a step-wise (when steps are taken according to a plan, it's called as 'step-wise' progress or proceeding) manner. Haphazard functioning, however well-intended it could be, leads a company nowhere.
Step-wising, therefore, is imperative for the success of a vision because goals not aligned with company's vision will yield nothing. Therefore, all goals should be directed to the vision of the company. If company has vision but not developed goals, the outcome will suffer.
For understanding vision to reality, it's required that steps must be in a tabulated manner for, in the words of Henry Balzac, 'Writing a novel and organizing a set up are almost same. Both need a preface or ground work, planning, plotting, theme developing and the totality' because:
A vision/ dream written down with a date becomes a goal. A Goal broken down into steps becomes a plan. A Plan backed by action & review makes your vision/dream a reality.
Lean management by curbing wastes (not just eight types of waste but doing away anything that causes waste, erosion and corrosion) and Kaizen's philosophy of continual improvement can be brought to the fore to realize the above-mentioned steps of VISION.
Remember, in a pyramidic organizational structure, "Management has a lot to do with answers. Leadership is a function of questions. And the first question for a leader always is: 'Who do we intend to be?' Not 'What are we going to do?' but 'Who do we intend to be?' The higher echelons in the organization have a vision of profitability, growth, enhanced sales, having inspired employees etc. All this will need action and execution. In other words, a Kaizenic approach of unrelenting improvement and a systematic Lean pruning will be required to the fulfillment of that vision, which is not ELUSIVE in terms of action and execution and alignment of goals. For, vision without execution is hallucination and vision sans action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare.
For overall organizational competence and the realization of a collective vision (sabkasaath, sabkavikas kind of vision envisaged by Mr Modi), it's imperative to bear on mind that-
- when vision is clear, people work willingly rather than from habit to achieve set goals.
- shared vision helps in focusing on and decision making
- vision exercise needs to have a building approach, which shows the scenario we are operating in, the options that we have, deciding competitive positioning, ultimately leading to achieving of strategic vision as a source of inspiration
- after setting goals for Growth and Profitability, the goals are step by step cascaded into the org structure;
- to achieve this we need uncompromising values, need for Values, vision and mission
- creating ownership by providing inputs and helping people understand change for better
- creating respect for people and their skills by asking them to play a key role in improvement process
For achieving and furthering this, a leader must reflect, reiterate and act on goals.......................
–Put faith in your Vision and do big-picture thinking to prioritize and set the trajectory of the day
–Plan for 3 things that you’ll do today to achieve the goal
–Take action on Important & not urgent tasks in the day otherwise the not important tasks become urgent tomorrow
–Talk about ideas, share information & data
–Fuel your creativity & passion by blocking off time for reading
–Browse information from variety of sources
•..............De stress Yourself
–Get some exercise; Take a walk during morning or evening
–Meditate as it helps body release the stress and reverses the effects of the flight-or-fight response
–Practice Gratitude as consciously focusing on gratitude helps you experience greater emotional well-being and physical health
–Stop being at war with yourself
–Becoming a peacemaker helps in focusing on the Goal in difficult times
–Practice peacefulness every day, develop a habit
–Less is truly more as it allows you to invest the time normally set aside for answering messages, making social media posts, and scrolling through news-feeds; for self and friends
–Take frequent breaks during your day of computer use and try to shut offline at least an hour before bedtime
–Watch this I forgot my Phone & Read 7 Important Reasons to Unplug and Find Space
•...............Review your Day
–Rewind and look what you’ve done throughout day
–Are you responding or reacting to the problems!
–Evaluate your day’s work – Did you accomplish what was planned!
–Think about greater challenges
–Read before going to sleep
Life’s like a camera,
Focus on what is important
Capture the good times,
And if things still don’t work out, Then take another shot.
Finally, I'd like to summarise it with a quatrain by Dorothy Parker which she wrote on VISION-
If you want your efforts to come to fruition
You ought to have a crystal clear vision
Only with a proper template and far-sight
Will you will even your critics' appreciation
Yes, that's the most important thing: Winning the laurels even from the critics!!
But then, you need to have a clear VISION.
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