One of the best things I did for my business was creating a vision statement and communicate it to my team. It has kept me focused and helped guide my team in decision-making as well. Creating a compelling vision, effectively communicating it, and setting and adjusting goals on a quarterly basis are key to keeping my business running smoothly. Let’s talk about how to do those things for your business.
Crafting Your Vision
The first step is reflecting on your values. Start by soul-searching, actually stepping out of the office, and giving yourself time to think. Find things that ignite your passion and unleash your potential; these things are the compass guiding your journey. Your vision must align with what truly matters to you, fueling your inner fire.
Then, visualize the future. Close your eyes and dream big! Envision your ecommerce business thriving in the long term. Picture the impact you want to create for your family, customers, industry, and community. Often my next step is to do something immersive and creative, like painting, gardening, or taking a walk. This allows my subconscious to do the work and it taps into things that are often hard for me to think through in a “logic” session.
Communicating Your Vision
Once you have completed these thought exercises, you’re ready to craft your message. Don’t let the blank paper cause you concern. Make a list of some of the keywords and ideas you came up with as you reflected on your values and vision. Then you can use those words in your statement. Complete your draft and let it sit. Then, come back to it over a few days and see how it feels. You may want to tweak it over several weeks.
You can try it out with friends and family and even trusted employees and clients, but let them know it’s draft and you’d like their feedback so that you can continue refining it. Their diverse viewpoints enrich your vision and create a sense of shared ownership. Remember the African proverb: “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”
However, it ultimately has to feel good to you, so don’t let their influence take you off course from your true North. Do a final check: is the language clear and inspiring? Does it resonate with your inner voice, while reflecting your deepest values and aspirations?
Setting and Adjusting Goals Quarterly
Once you have your Vision, it helps to filter out some of the noise about all the things you could do. You use that vision to ensure the goals you set are moving you in the direction of that bigger picture future state. Another trick with goal setting is not to get bogged down with everything on your to do list. You will continue to do the “have to” items. Think about the few major initiatives that you can undertake that will truly drive the business forward. Write them down as the three to five “rocks”, the high-impact goals that align with your vision and core values.
As we develop our weekly plans, we look at what steps we can take every day to move closer to accomplishing the goal. Then on a quarterly basis, meet with your team to review progress, adjust priorities, and set new rocks for the upcoming quarter. Engage your team in evaluating what’s working, what’s not, and what needs to change. Stay agile and adapt your goals as needed to maximize results.
If you have had tremendous success with a project, or if something went off the rails, After Action Reviews are a great way for the team to better understand the root cause of any great or bad outcome. You can learn how to repeat the action or avoid it in the future. This meeting format can be applied to your business today as a simple way to improve performance.
The most important step of all is remembering to monitor, evaluate, and adjust. Quarterly goals are not set in stone. Sometimes things need to change. Continuously monitoring and evaluating progress will ensure you stay on the right track. Celebrate victories, identify challenges, and adjust when needed. After all, adaptability is the key to progress.
Too often as entrepreneurs, we focus only on the problems, however, celebrating success is vital too. Stopping to realize that we are learning and having an impact, even though we see plenty of other opportunities, is an important practice to ensure that we don’t burn out from the ongoing stress.
Crafting a compelling vision, effectively communicating it, and setting and adjusting goals quarterly are vital steps to ensure your success. It’s time to put these insights into action and embrace the power of vision, fuel your team’s passion, and conquer the ecommerce landscape with unwavering determination. Your business, team, and your personal life will all benefit!
When you’re ready to plan out your vision and goals, reach out to the bookskeep team for help!