They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and if you sit down with someone who is a visionary and ask them what they do, that’s probably how many words you’ll get. Entrepreneurs and other visionaries are nothing else if not passionate, and given a listening ear, they can go into elaborate detail about the new frontiers and new worlds they envision.
But if you are communicating your organization’s vision using a thousand or more words, only the most patient will stay along for the ride. Simplifying your message and making it transferable is the key to your success.
Who Are Your Runners?
The ancient Hebrew prophet, Habakkuk, said it this way, “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it” (Habakkuk 2:1). The first step to seeing a vision fulfilled is to write it down and make it transferable.
Whether your vision is a business idea, community program, or any other initiative, it takes resources—especially people—to make your vision a reality. The challenge is in taking your vision—something ethereal and intangible existing in your own mind—and communicating it effectively to the people who will help make it happen. These are your “runners” and they must be able to read your vision and understand it clearly. The good news is, once these go-getters have a grasp on your vision, they will create a buzz about it wherever they go.
Simplify Your Story
The idea of “creating a buzz” around your business idea ties into one of the most successful marketing tactics for small and medium-sized businesses: cultivating good referrals. In an article titled “Simplify Your Company’s Story” in the September 2006 issue of Entrepreneur Magazine, author and businessman Ivan Misner wrote about the importance of communicating what you do in a way that is relatable to your referral sources.
It may seem like a no-brainer—don’t we all know what we do for a living? Of course, but can you communicate it clearly and simply to your potential sources? If you think about it, you may find you’re not quite as clear on the facts as you thought. And if you can’t tell your potential sources what you do or what you sell, how can they send you good referrals?
A Unified Vision
Referral sources aren’t the only ones you want to be able to “run” with your vision. It is essential that management and leadership teams clearly understand the vision, as well as your entire staff. If the people within your organization know what it is they are running toward, they will be able to communicate your objectives and goals with clients, potential investors, and anyone else who can help your vision materialize. They will also be able to continually examine their own work in light of the big picture, helping to eliminate unnecessary tasks that waste time and resources.
Minimizing Words, Maximizing Impact
Helping visionaries develop and communicate their inspired ideas is one of the things I love to do most in my work. I cannot tell you how happy it makes me when a client tells me, “You grasped what our organization is all about and communicated it better than I could have myself.” I know from my own experiences as a business owner that it can be extremely daunting to take that whole picture in your mind’s eye—the vast horizon of a new frontier—and try to hone it down to a few poignant words. Sometimes it helps to have that patient, listening ear to sit with you while you explain in a thousand words the story your picture tells, and then together work on simplifying it into a clear, transferable message.
My business vision in a few words is this: To help you effectively communicate and implement yours. Our writing services have been developed with the understanding that every document your organization sends out is an opportunity to communicate your message to a potential “runner.” Our consulting services and workshops help you build a workable strategy and gain the tools you need to make your vision come to life. If you need help making your vision transferable, contact us today.