For the final installment in our Leadership Series, I wanted to share how BOS Media would answer the questions we’ve been asking over the past several posts. I hope it gives you a sense of the clarity and focus this exercise can bring to your business.
VISION: Where are we going?
In one line: WE PROVIDE DIGITAL MARKETING TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS.
A company’s success is tied to digital marketing, but most business owners have no idea how to do it. BOS Media provides the tools, resources and strategy that is proven to bring in leads and grow your business.
MISSION: Why does it matter?
The digital world is constantly changing. Business owners who don’t have time to keep up will be left behind.
At BOS Media, we not only know the latest trends, we’ll get to know WHO YOU ARE as a company, and where to best position you in the marketplace.
“We Help The True Beauty of Your Business Shine Through”
STRATEGY: How do we do it?
We’re your one-stop shop for all your digital marketing needs – from website design, branding, graphic design, to SEO – whatever it takes to help your business grow, we got your back.
We believe everything starts with relationship. Relationship is what drives us to bring the highest level of expertise to the design and implementation of your storytelling strategy.
For your business to thrive, it all comes down to connecting people. That’s the heart of BOS Media.
There used to be an old commercial for Vidal Sassoon that said, “If you don’t look good, we don’t look good.” For us, that’s what it all comes down to – our dream is helping to make your dream come true.
Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help you keep moving forward!
“Whatever You Do, We’ll Make You Look Good”
Just one more week before we wrap up this Leadership Series. I really hope it has helped you step into the first quarter of 2021 with a new sense of purpose.
We’ve talked about the difference between vision (Where are we going?) and mission (Why are we going there?), and how to communicate your vision into a clear vision script.
But there’s still one more key element: STRATEGY. Strategy answers the “How” question –
HOW are we going to get there?
How do you intend to get from here to there? From the present moment to the future vision?
Here are three principles in developing an effective strategy:
1. STAY FOCUSED We’ve talked about this a lot the past couple weeks, but hopefully that underscores the importance of focus. I really believe the number one threat to your strategy is distractions – especially the many “good” options that are not your company’s single goal.
I heard a great example from Southwest Airlines. Their vision was to be “THE low-fare airline” (clear, single focus). At one point, a marketing executive suggested adding chicken caesar salad to some of their longer flights. Ultimately it came down to one question: “Will adding a chicken caesar salad help to make us THE low-fare airline?” If it wasn’t supporting that one goal, it was a non-starter.
- Don’t get distracted. Learn to say NO to what’s not aligned to your vision.
2. COLLABORATE “The best way to lead people into the future is to connect with them deeply in the present.” Practical implementation is a team effort. Listen, create safe space for honest feedback, and bring the people around you on board in the process – those relationships are your greatest asset.
- Don’t keep the vision in your head. SHARE IT.
3. ADAPT Strategies can change, based on how conditions on the ground change.
Obviously, we’ve all had to navigate this in the past year. A global pandemic required major adjustments in strategy. Our word for the year was “pivot” – we’re still committed to our vision, but how we got there had to shift.
- Don’t get stuck. The destination remains the same, but the HOW is flexible.
Take some time this week to review your vision document and how you want to implement it within your organization. It’s never too late to start being more strategic!
Imagine you had an eyeball that wanted to enroll in hearing lessons. Or if your nose was like, “This is America, I can be anything I want!” as it attempted to take over for your pancreas.
Thankfully, our body parts understand the power of SINGLE FOCUS.
Which brings us back to last week, and your mission to write a mission statement that aligns your organization toward one clear objective. Here are the questions we proposed to help get your focused:
- What is your organization’s core idea?
- How can you make it more concrete?
- Why should your employees care about it?
There’s a reason why we keep talking about this. We really do believe you have something unique to offer the world, but too many companies don’t have the strategic direction to effectively move it forward.
If you’re still feeling a bit rudderless, here are the FOUR QUESTIONS that define your mission:
- Who are we? What are we in business to do?
- Who are your customers, and what problem do they have?
- What’s your unique solution?
- What’s your promise of transformation?
I know we’re all busy, but here’s your mission (if you choose to accept it): Schedule an hour this week to sharpen your answers to these questions. The more clarity you have, the more you’ll be able to communicate your mission with a focus.
All of us at BOS Media are rooting for you to accomplish the impossible. Hopefully this helps you do it a bit more strategically.
Over the past few weeks, we have been talking about leadership – specifically vision and mission. Vision is the “Where” – it answers where we are going. Mission is the “Why.” Why are we going there? Why do we do what we do?
Many companies try to summarize this in a Mission Statement, and unfortunately, most of them are terrible.
The biggest problem: using a bunch of fancy words that don’t say anything. Like this one: “It is our mission to continue to authoritatively provide access to diverse services to stay relevant in tomorrow’s world.” That was actually created by a Mission Statement Generator on the internet – too many companies are letting those robots have a laugh at our expense.
It’s easy to get sidetracked and end up with a professional sounding and perfectly scripted mission statement that’s vague and unclear. No one will remember and eventually, no one will care.
Here’s a quick video on why Mission Statements can end up being so terrible.
Don’t try to say everything, and don’t try to please everyone. Change happens when leadership aligns the company toward a SINGLE goal.
Here are a few questions to help you FOCUS:
- What is your organization’s core idea? The “secret sauce” that drives what you do?
- How can you make it more concrete? Cut out the fluff and the corporate jargon
- And last: why should your employees care about it?
If you do this right, this statement has the power to rally people together and drive your business forward. It’s a declaration of the ONE THING you do that is unique and transformative.
Take some time this week to finalize your mission statement and share it with the world. And as we say on our podcast: make it matter.
The third year into running my own business, I was stuck. I was busy with a lot of projects and drowning in work. Most of the tasks bottle-necked at my desk and I was frustrated. I needed help.
After much thought and with a sense of desperation, I hired a business coach. He gave me my very first assignment – to answer this question:
“What do you want?”
Imagine the future, and in this future, you are getting ready for bed at the end of the day and you think to yourself, “Wow, that was a perfect day, I am truly living my best life.” What does that look like? Where are you? What are you doing? Who are you with? How are you feeling? Who are you helping?
Doing this exercise really helped me to see my best future. My VISION.
But the next question really threw me for a loop. “Why does it matter?” To put it bluntly, he said, “That’s great that you want to do, feel and obtain all those things…but why? Why does that matter to you?”
Answering this question was my next step in finding my MISSION.
If you were able to work through the Vision Script we discussed last week, hopefully you have more clarity on what the future looks like for you. But it doesn’t stop there.
As we talked about before: Vision = Where are we going?
Mission = Why are we going there?
What if someone told you to dig a ditch all day, then the next day you had you fill it back up. And you did this all week, and then for an entire year. They’ll even pay you for it – how about $150,000 per year. Would you do it?
Most won’t. And if they did do it? They might end up going crazy at the end.
Because without the why, it might as well just be torture.
If you are leading a company, or leading a team, you have a responsibility that goes beyond just giving assignments. You help the ones doing those assignments understand the purpose in what they do. We can’t expect people to show up every morning excited to be there and productive without letting them know where you are headed (Vision) and why that matters (Mission).
On a final note, tell them what their role is in their journey there. Communicating that changes the work experience from a set of meaningless tasks into a meaningful mission.
This is leadership. It will make all the difference in the world. And it costs you nothing! It’s free to you, and freeing to your team.
When we think about having a vision, often we picture the greatest visionaries in history.
They are charismatic, brilliant, incredible communicators, inspiring and even good looking. But what about the rest of us?
The truth is, we are all able to have vision and we are all able to communicate it. Remember, the essence of the word “vision” just means being able to see.
Especially in an organization, this sight is desperately needed. Like we said last week, vision answers the “Where?” question. People will not follow if they don’t know where you are going.
The pressure can be daunting as a leader, but we don’t need a grandiose dream or something that would dramatically impact the world around us. We just need 4 simple ingredients – once these are determined, write them down and communicate them often.
- Vision should be CLEAR
- Vision should be INSPIRING
- Vision should be PRACTICAL
- Vision should be ATTRACTIVE
If you don’t know where to start, think of it this way: Vision is simply figuring out what the future should look like.
As Stephen R. Covey says in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, “Start with the end in mind.”
Think of yourself as standing in tomorrow—say, three to five years from now. Imagine the future you see for your…
- Sales and Marketing
What do you see? What does it look like? What’s possible for you and your business?
Write a long paragraph describing and articulating what you see. This is vision.
Once you have this written, we can take our next steps.
Can’t wait to see what happens next!
I love the fresh energy that comes with a new year. Starting this week, my goal is to harness all that hope and turn it into something that can transform your business in 2021.
Welcome to the BOS Media Leadership Series. Over the next month, I’ll be sharing the best practices that define all successful companies, along with the keys to implementing them for maximum impact.
It all starts with VISION.
The first question that a leader must ask is:
Does Your Team Know Where You Are Going?
That might sound obvious, but you might be surprised at how many leaders struggle with their answer. We often just take it for granted, and when we do try to put it into words, we fumble around, or use vague language that lacks focus.
It reminds me of the legendary Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi. Every football season, he’d start the first practice by holding up a ball in front of the team and saying, “This is a football.” He understood that leadership means having absolute clarity on the fundamental question: where are we going?
Part of answering that question well requires making a distinction between vision and mission.
Vision vs Mission
Most leaders don’t know the difference, but they should, because it’s an essential part of leadership.
Vision is a clear, inspiring, practical, attractive picture of your organization’s future. It defines the future of your team, your product, your marketing, and your impact.
In short, vision is the “Where.” It answers, where are we going?
Mission is the “Why.” Why are we going there? Why do we do what we do?
In order to lead well, we must start with vision. Take some time this week to clearly define your vision statement, and work on communicating it to your team in a way that leaves no doubt about where you’re headed.
Here’s to 2021 being a year of greater purpose and success for your company.