Leaders need to define, establish and communicate to all layers of staff the organization’s mission, values, vision, and strategy. As Jack Welch says “Everybody then has the same set of facts”.

The mission is like a timeless beacon pointing to something that may never be reached—for example, Walt Disney’s mission is “to make people happy” and 3M’s mission is “to solve unsolved problems innovatively.” General Electric’s Mission is to “improve the quality of life through technology and innovation”.

The vision is where we want to go by when a set period of time. The vision is a subset of the mission. It is a tool to galvanize your organization if it is stated with enough clarity and commitment. Historically there are some very famous examples.A notable example is when President John F. Kennedy said, “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.”

This simple statement galvanized the whole American scientific community for a herculean effort. Each day, week, and month, employees around the United States were working toward this vision. From the moment it had been uttered, NASA experts were planning backward to see how the millions of building blocks needed to be put together.

The values are what your organization stands for: “We believe . ” For example, a Public Sector Entity has the values, “Seek innovation and excellence, engage constructively, ask questions, support and help each other, bring solutions, see the bigger picture.”

Welch promoted the need to have values that worked. Workshops were held and staff came up with very practical wording for the organization’s values, such as:

Act in a boundary less fashion always searching for and applying the best ideas regardless of their source”.

Welch sees values as being fundamental, he assesses managers by their results and their values, creating a matrix of four options. The managers with ‘good results and poor values’ were dealt with in the same way as the manager who failed with both– they were ousted. You can train many things into a person but it is very hard to get them to change values that have been deep rooted through genetics, environment and parenting.

Please read “Winning” by Jack and Suzy Welch.

You may wish also to , this paper can be purchased from my website.

read an extract from my Winning Leadership Whitepaper