“It’s much easier to have a conversation (planning session) about the short term future, but how do we talk about the longer term future?” I asked.
Walter visibly nodded, then shook his head from side to side. “Not sure. I mean, I think we try. The closest thing we have is our company Mission statement, our company Vision statement.”
“There are times,” I chuckled, “when I threaten to steal all the Vision statements off the wall, shuffle them up and replace them in the dead of night. See if anyone notices?”
Walter piled on, “Yes, our Vision statement sounds pretty much like most of the other Vision statements out there. We want to be the premiere provider of high quality products and services, exceeding our customer’s expectations, using innovative solutions to build a brand recognized around the world.”
“A perfect attempt at thinking conceptually, into the future. What was the process you used to come up with your Vision statement (that sounds a lot like every other Vision statement)?”
Walter grinned. “It was ugly. The most disorganized meeting I think we have ever had. The instructions were to create a timeless statement that captures the essence of business, to create a picture, five years into the future. It turned into an exercise of superlatives.”