Real Research: Practical Steps In Crafting A Leadership Vision
by Vivienne Liu
Research & Development Specialist
WHAT IS A LEADERSHIP VISION?
It is a vivid description of how you see your future self in a leadership position — what do you want to accomplish in that role? According to Harvard Business Review, a useful vision has to be “rooted in your past, address the future, and deal with today’s realities.”
WHY DO I NEED ONE?
Writing your aspirations down is a powerful act: by putting your leadership vision on paper, you’re making a conviction and commitment to see it fulfilled! It’s also inspiring to yourself and to the people that you lead.
HOW DO I COME UP WITH ONE?
Below is a step-by-step guide to help you conceptualise your personal vision.
- Identifying what really matters to you.
Reflect on your top 3 leadership moments in the past year and write them down. Describe in detail what you did in those instances. Then ask yourself, “why do I say these were my top 3 leadership moments?” Once you have an answer, ask yourself “why” again. If needed, do this a few more times to get to the core of what really matters to you.
Decide on a particular time frame in the future.
Decide on a particular point in time in the future where you want to see your leadership vision fulfilled. It can be “three months from now,” or “when I take on a larger team,” and so forth, depending on your leadership journey.
Close your eyes and visualise your future leadership self.
Start imagining how your future self will look like as a leader. What do you see yourself doing? How are you leading your team? What are your followers saying about your leadership style? What are your followers saying about your leadership style?
- Paint a picture with words.
Now take a look at what you've written and refine it into a vision statement. Use descriptive language to paint a vivid image of how your future leadership self will look like. It would be even better to draw it out!
- Put it somewhere visible.
Be it on your desk or in your wallet, keep your vision statement somewhere you will see often.
What are examples of inspiring vision statements that you’ve seen or heard? We would love to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Friedman, S. (2008). Define your personal leadership vision. Harvard Business Review.
Heathfield, S. M. (2016). Create your personal vision statement. Retrieved from https://www.thebalance.com/create-your-personal-vision-statement-1919208