Over the past few days I've consulted with incredibly talented people feeling stuck.... Why? NOT because they lack gifts, abilities and work ethic. NOT because they lack desire and willingness to do great things.
No, they feel stuck working for organizations that exist to ..... exist. Well, maybe a bit beyond that. But not much! Sure, they require profitability. OK, well they even want to make good products for their clients... and therefore be profitable. But, it stops there.
They, and many like them, are desperately seeking vision that matters.
Frankly, it makes me angry and sad. I've worked for companies like that too. No, they're not doing bad things. But there's nothing great about the work. The leadership lacked greater vision and ended up employing people who felt more like lifeless automatons who've traded their time and energy for a paycheck. Many would love being part of something larger than them... organizations with missions to do something great... worthwhile.... noble.... change the world in some meaningful way.
But, where are those?
Really, how many of us feel truly excited about
A vision is to maximize profitability for our shareholders?
A vision is to make the owner wealthy so he can retire early (and we can earn a paycheck)?
A vision is to earn a good living as a lawyer?
A vision to eventually work fewer hours?
Good people need that. You too! (Yes, you are good!)
OF COURSE meaningless mission and slapped together vision statements aren't much better. And of course big vision can be attached to darker things like grandiosity and quest for notoriety.
But, we people-types rise to challenges posed by great vision. And discovering and engaging vision requires time, thought and honesty. It may be the most important investment a leader makes. Do they realize that? Do you?
If this sounds negative, here are some positives.
Great Vision requires
What are you authentically passion about?
If you can't come up with anything remotely attached to your business, are you in the right business? Really?
Consider Charity Water. Founder Scott Harrison went from self-focused to building a team bent on providing clean drinking water for millions who lacked it.
Go to their website and read:
We're a group of passionate and determined creative problem-solvers who want to make a difference. Our mission is to
Poverty Facts and Stats.
Almost half the world — over three billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day.
Around 27-28 percent of all children in developing countries are estimated to be underweight or stunted.
Nearly a billion people entered the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names.
Every year there are 350–500 million cases of malaria, with 1 million fatalities
For the 1.9 billion children from the developing world, there are 640 million without adequate shelter (1 in 3)
2.2 million children die each year because they are not immunized
80% of people don't feel a "fit, passion or meaning through their world (what I'm passionate about changing!)
If you can't do something then the vision may not be a fit. Your vision may be the most difficult thing in your life... but worthwhile? Totally!
Mark Victor Hansen and Jack Canfield were told by over 100 publishers that there was no need for their Chicken Soup for the Soul book.
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