In Part I of this multi-article write-up we explored the introduction to ‘Smarter Start’ Business Planning and the first ‘planning catalyst’; Energising your Planning Ecology. We continue in this article; Part II of the series, exploring another planning catalyst.
2. Resonant Visioning
You may have heard that to develop a successful business, all you need is to take three steps:
1) An inspiring Vision, 2) Developing an Effective Plan, and 3) Putting the Plan Into Action.
In this section, we are challenging the more traditional approach to Visioning (step 1)
Yes agreed, a vision statement identifies the ‘where?’ – where you are headed? What is the Vision, is the first question to be answered, a pivotal moment for foresight. But how we get to that vision statement determines the quality and resonant depth of the vision statement. Typically, a vision doesn’t go anywhere deep enough for organic motivation (naturally arising, non-‐effortful motivation) of people, management, staff and employees to occur.
The matrix below will help to explain. It is a simple Clarity vs Resonance grid.
Zone 1: High Clarity / Low Resonance: I know what I need to do but feel nothing about it. It is ‘nutrient poor’ so I must exert effort to make it happen, because it’s an Intellectual exercise only. “I give mandated effort only.”
Zone 2: Low Clarity / Low Resonance: I don’t know what I need to do and feel nothing about it. I’m confused and frustrated – I’m Lost. “I withdraw my effort.”
Zone 3: Low Clarity / High Resonance: I don’t know what I need to do but am passionate / energized – I’m Excited, so excited in so many ways that it cause dispersion. “I give scattered bursts of effort.”
Zone 4: High Clarity / High Resonance: I know what I need to do and it’s deeply fulfilling. It is generative (nutrient-‐rich). “I willingly volunteer my discretionary effort.”
Clearly, to be effective the Vision needs to land-in and come-out from Zone 4. It must touch the core and resonate first with the leader and then subsequently and most importantly, the team. This, in turn, will connect people with higher internal energy levels (Level 4 and Level 5 energy states, from this article series, Part I; “Setting your Planning Ecology”).
The question is, again, “How to get there?”- How to touch that deeply felt, inspiring, resonant place in your people?
It does not come from the usual ‘What would the ideal situation look like?’ approach – which could so easily be usurped by intellectualism. It takes a deliberately facilitated approval.
Here are some vision statements that came about from the more pointed visioning process I apply. These all resonate and could not have been developed if left up to the team:
• For a Law firm: “Our Firm. The Firm” – 4 words.
“Our Firm” a family approach, inclusive and collaborative that will grow into “The Firm”, a business that others will benchmark themselves against
• For an IT Innovation Company: “Epic Futures. Let’s go there” – 5 words.
This company’s courageous focus to continue to create leading edge solutions
• For a Provincial Sports Organisation: “Dreaming Big. Embracing the Small” – 5 words.
Continuing to create world class sportsmen/women but without leaving anyone behind.
There is a sense of movement, and resonance in each of these Vision statements, for their respective organisations. They’re easy to remember, they are uplifting and relatable; making each a powerful tool for leaders to come out from as they speak with their teams.
Interestingly, Sir John Kirwan (Coach of the Auckland Blues rugby team and former All Blacks and internationally renowned rugby coach) has a similar philosophy. He doesn’t call it a generative vision; their visionary team motto statement is “Our Winning Try”.
How to get into the state to be able to create a Resonant Vision? that’s being covered in a future article, look out for “Inside the visioning state … creating …. radiant visionary statements”
Stay tuned for next month’s newsletter for Part III of this article, about “Yes-No Planning”
Article written by our New Zealand Associate; Bruce Ross
Bruce of “Ignite Business Leadership” is a long-term experienced business coach, leadership expert and facilitator of energising workshops.