Small businesses with the fastest growing revenue know exactly where they are going. According to Inc Magazines 28th 500 fastest growing small businesses list, approximately 88% of them have a statement outlining where they are going. The other 12% are living dangerously.
That’s no surprise. As simplistic as this next statement sounds, it’s incredibly profound – People moving in a clear direction tend to get somewhere. The rest simply react and respond to the world around them by changing direction every time an outside influence creates adversity or opportunity, wandering and wondering their way through years of aimless business stagnation.
The smaller your company is, the more you need a vision statement, because you are more affected by every wind of change that comes along. A small boat is much more affected by small changes in the weather than a big ship.
Small business owners are so buried in the day to day Tyranny of the Urgent that coming up for air to see where the boat is going is never a high enough priority. Not knowing where the boat should go makes this the biggest issue a small business owner has. He who aims at nothing hits it every time.
Ever wonder why you’re on the treadmill? It’s because you don’t know where you’re business is supposed to take you. What is the end game? As my Irish friend John Heenan says, “If you don’t have a vision for your own life, you become part of someone else’s vision for theirs.”
Start with a vision statement for your business that has the following attributes:
- Simple, short and devoid of business-bingo words like “growth”, “success”, “best practices”, and other such fluffy and meaningless business-speak.
- Expressing your personal values into your business. Use your business to get you somewhere. The vision statement for my business is “Live well by doing good.” We have a number of very specific, measurable ways we can unpack this in our business, and we know exactly where it is leading us to the date and time (we intend to arrive at Business Maturity on Friday, February 18, 2011 at 10am) It drives everything we do.
Find out why you’re doing what you’re doing and where your business is supposed to take you. Then go that direction – relentlessly, tirelessly, with the will to succeed and in single-minded pursuit of that objective.
Stop reacting to shiny objects and winds of change. Take control of your business direction and you will make more money in less time.