In my last four posts we discussed the four areas of strategic planning that I evaluate during a Clone Your Favorite™ Client (CYFC) Assessment: mission, vision, core values, and SMART goals. I’ll be honest, rarely do I find all four of those items present in my target market companies let alone communicated throughout their organizations. But I usually find at least one or two which is enough to help define the company culture (even though you really do need all 4). So when I start the next section of my CYFC assessment (Marketing & Branding), the first thing I evaluate is how well a company’s branding strategy reflects their strategic plan and company culture.
In my last two posts I discussed the importance of mission statements and core values to better understand who your best potential clients are and how to get more. In this post its time to look at vision statements (no pun intended).
In general, you need vision statements so your employees know where the company is going and how they will have to develop to help it get there. I’ve worked with several clients whose businesses have outgrown some of their long term key employees because the employee didn’t understand the vision well enough to develop their skills to match the company’s future needs. Sound familiar?
Obviously your investors and other stakeholders will need to understand you vision statement too, but your clients also need to see and understand it so they know how they fit in with your plans. I conducted a customer perception study for one client where we learned that because they were expanding into a new market segment, some of their current clients were concerned that their market was no longer a priority. That concern potentially could have cost them a renewal contract.
When it comes to a Clone Your Favorite™ Assessment, its obvious that your company vision can go a long way in helping define your target market. Often when companies start out offering a product or service, they sell it to whoever will pay for it. What you may find over time is that there is a specific market segment where your product or service can add more value – potentially game changing value for an industry. In that situation your vision statement may and probably should change to reflect that revelation.
In my next post I’ll cover the last piece of the mission/vision/values/goals section of my Clone Your Favorite™ Assessment – SMART goals. In the mean time, I’d love to hear some of your favorite vision statements (and why they’re your favorites) in the comments and as always, happy hunting!