How to write a vision statement with examples and tips
By Indeed Editorial Team
Published 5 June 2022
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
A vision statement is a tool that companies can use to set goals, guide decisions and align their teams. A well-written vision statement can help a company identify its strengths and limitations so that stakeholders can make informed decisions about its growth. Learning how to write a vision statement can have a positive impact on the company you work for and help to advance your career. In this article, we outline what a vision statement is, how to write one, the difference between a mission and a vision statement and some examples of great statements you can use for inspiration.
What is a vision statement?
A vision statement is a short, clear description of a company's mission and goals. This statement helps define what an organisation is and what it stands for. A vision statement helps employees understand where the company is heading and how they fit into that vision. It helps them decide about their careers and personal growth. Companies typically use vision statements in strategic planning for specific projects or initiatives. These statements can guide and align key stakeholders who may take ownership of the vision and help make it a reality.
How to write a vision statement
The following is a step-by-step guide on how to write a vision statement for a company:
1. Brainstorm ideas
Start by thinking about the things that are important to the business you work for and what it wants to accomplish in the long term. You can write your ideas down on paper or in a document on your computer. Meet with key stakeholders in the business and anyone else who has unique insight into the company's history. Ask each person to describe their thoughts on the future of the company. Then, compile these ideas into one document for easy reference.
2. Evaluate each idea
Go through each idea and evaluate its importance based on how it aligns with the company's goals. Next, look at how workable each suggestion is by considering all of its advantages and challenges and thinking about how the company could achieve each idea. You may develop new ideas and revise existing ones based on previous versions of the vision statement. Edit and revise these ideas until they reflect the overall goals of the business.
3. Consider the target audience
When writing a vision statement, it's beneficial to understand the target audience. Instead of creating one vision statement that appeals to everyone, you may focus on developing several statements that interest and address different audiences. For example, if you're writing a vision statement for investors or potential investors, you would likely include reasons why investing in the business is a good choice.
4. Review competitors' vision statements
The best way to develop a vision statement is by conducting research on similar companies in the industry. For example, if you work in a coffee shop, you might use a popular café's vision statement as inspiration. You can consider researching other industries, but remember that the business you work for may possess unique characteristics that distinguish it from companies in other fields.
5. Make it flexible
Remember that vision statements can change. Businesses may update their vision statement with each new product or service launch when they restructure or experience significant growth. It's important that these statements are broad yet specific enough to provide direction. Ideally, a vision statement is realistic and measurable but not so rigid that a company cannot adjust it as circumstances change.
6. Keep it brief
Choose your words carefully. Typically, a vision statement is only a few sentences long but conveys important information about a business's hopes for the future. While you want the statement to be concise, you also want it to be memorable and inspiring enough that employees remember it easily when requiring guidance or motivation at work.
7. Review it often
Often, vision statements don't change, but there may be times when companies adjust them to reflect alterations within the industry or company culture. In the event of a merger or sale or if a company gains new management, there may be some modification of the vision statement. When reviewing a statement, ensure that it still contains the core values and vision of the company you work for.
Differences between a vision and mission statement
A mission statement describes why a company exists and what it plans to do to meet its present objectives. It's often more tactical and specific than a vision statement and details what a business does for its customers or clients and its core values. A strong mission statement can help clarify what an organisation stands for and guides companies on how to operate in the present moment.
A vision statement is typically an extension of the mission statement. It describes where a company wants to be in the future and how it plans to get there. The major difference between a mission and a vision statement is that the latter focuses on what a company wants to become, while the former focuses on what it does now.
Why is a vision statement beneficial?
A vision statement is a declaration of what a company stands for and its future ambitions. It's more than a tagline or slogan since it helps communicate a shared sense of purpose among employees and customers. These individuals can use the statement to decide how they interact with one another and with the wider brand. Having a strong vision statement can help companies attract investors and other partners who share their goals, values and ambitions for growth.
What to include in a vision statement
Typically, a well-written vision statement is:
Optimistic but realistic: A vision statement often provides an appealing idea of what the future could look like for a company, but it's important to ensure that it's realistic and believable for employees, investors and customers.
Exciting: It's important that the statement appeals to individuals and excites them about their involvement in the company. For example, you might include a short phrase or sentence that explains what makes the business different from others.
Aspirational: Include tangible details about where the company wants to be in the future. This could be a number, such as the sales volume the company wants to achieve, or something more abstract.
Simple: Writing an effective vision statement requires simple language that anyone can understand, regardless of their level of education or industry knowledge.
Inspirational: You might include an inspirational anecdote that shows why the company exists and what makes it unique from its competitors. It might refer to the founders or their values, inspiring historical events or anything that helps employees see that they're a part of the company's long-term goals.
Examples of vision statements
Below are a few examples of good vision statements:
Blues Entertainment Inc.: To be the world's leading provider of high-quality entertainment content and services.
M&U Farms: To build a better future by creating a healthy lifestyle for all individuals in our community through sustainable food production.
Mason Pharmaceuticals: To be the leading provider of innovative and quality health care.
Tips for using a vision statement
The following tips can help you utilise a vision statement in different areas of the business you work for:
Set a clear goal for employees. Having a clear understanding of what the organisation stands for can help employees perform their jobs more effectively and contribute to achieving company goals.
Set expectations. A vision statement can set expectations for all stakeholders, including customers, investors, board members, suppliers and partners, because it clarifies the common goal for the future.
Set priorities. You can use a vision statement to set priorities for projects within the organisation and provide direction for developing new products or services.
Include it in company documents. You can include the company's vision statement on its website, employee handbook and corporate documents, including stock prospectuses and annual reports.
Display it on company premises. Displaying a company's vision statement in the workplace shows both employees and customers that the organisation cares about its mission and values.
Include it in advertising materials. When advertising products or services, include elements of the vision statement, so customers identify it as part of the company's brand identity.
Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.
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