You are on page 1of 1



Building Your Companys Vision

Companies like Hewlett-Packard, 3M, Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble, Merck,
Sony, Motorola, and Nordstrom enjoy enduring success have core values and a core
purpose that remain fixed, while their business strategies and practices endlessly adapt
to a changing world. Truly great companies understand the difference between what
should never change and what should be open to change, between what is genuinely
sacred and what is not. This rare ability to manage continuity and change is closely
linked to the ability to develop a vision.
A well-conceived vision consists of two major components: core ideology and
envisioned future. The core ideology captures what you stand for and why you exist.
You do not create or set core ideology. You discover and understand it by looking inside.
Ideology must be authentic. You cannot fake it. It must be meaningful and inspirational
only to people inside. It need not be exciting to outsiders or differentiating vs. others.
The point is not to create a perfect statement but to gain a deep understanding of your
core values and purpose which can then be expressed in a multitude of ways. Once you
are clear about the core ideology, you should feel free to change absolutely anything is
not part of it. If its not core, its up for change! Core ideology consists of Core Values
and Core Purpose.
Core values are the guiding principles that already exist but may not be articulated. It
requires no external justification; they have intrinsic value and importance to those inside
(goal is to guide and inspire, not to differentiate)
Core Purpose articulates your reason for being, It provides inspiration and direction for
doing the work. It should not change through time and circumstances. It is never truly
completed a guiding star on the horizon
Core competencies should be well-aligned with a companys core ideology and are
often rooted it in; but they are not the same thing. Core competence is a strategic
concept that defines your organizations capabilities what you are particularly good at
whereas core ideology captures what you stand for and why you exist.
Envisioned Future consists of a 10-to-30 year audacious goal plus vivid descriptions of
what it would be like to achieve the goal.
BHAG Big Hairy Audacious Goal
The goal is a huge challenge, akin to climbing Mt. Everest. It is clear and compelling; it
serves as a unifying focal point of effort, and acts as a catalyst for team spirit.
Organizations may have many BHAGs at different levels operating at the same time but
must have a vision-level BHAG that applies to the entire organization. It requires thinking
beyond current capabilities and the current environment. A BHAG should require
extraordinary effort and perhaps a little luck.
A clearly articulated goal with a clear finish line
Achievable within a specific timeframe (10-30 years)
15% knowledge of how, 50%-70% sure we can
Tangible, energizing, highly focused people get it right away
Vivid Description
It is translating the vision of the future from words into pictures, of creating an image
people can carry around in their heads to make it tangible. A vibrant, engaging and
specific description of what it will be like to achieve the BHAG. It makes the BHAG
tangible in peoples minds.
A direct link to the fundamental dynamic of visionary companies: preserve the core and
stimulate progress. Building a visionary organization is 1% vision and 99% alignment