Heads Up

A vision is not a sentence

So often I see visions which are a sentence and, whilst in many instances less is more, in this case I believe less really is less. You see a vision is exactly that; a vision, a picture, and as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words (not a sentence). I’m not saying your vision should be a picture – it can be – but I think it’s quite hard to convey a full vision in a picture. And if we don’t express our vision clearly, those images and feelings that live in our head of what we want to create, then people can’t get excited about it or get behind it and it doesn’t let them decide if they want the same vision as you. Let me demonstrate:

If I said ‘Come on holiday with me’; is that enough for you to decide? If not, what do you want to know? Where are we going? ‘Ok, somewhere cool’, is that enough for you to decide? You might be wondering if I mean cool like Amsterdam or New York, or cool as in cold. Fact is, I need to tell you a lot more about where we’re going, I need to give you a vision (especially if it’s somewhere you’ve never been) in order for you to 1) understand my vision and 2) decide.

When I worked in business, my leaders would come back after working very hard for a few days with a vision sentence. I was always very behind the company (it’s hard not to love John Lewis) and I wanted to march behind my leaders’ banners, but when they’d share it, it would leave me cold. It meant a lot to them because they had spent days discussing it and so they understood it on a far deeper level – they had the vision that it represented – but to the rest of us, it didn’t mean enough.

Top tip: When you are creating your vision, try to explain what you see and feel inside.

About the Author

Sonia Gill is founder of Heads Up, specialising in supporting Head Teachers and School Leaders create an outstanding school culture. https://ukheadsup.com

photo credit: Heather Quintal via photopin cc