The people who make the biggest differences in organizations have excellent vision. Vision is valuable because it gives you the confidence to know an obstacle can be overcome, and you can see the path in a short amount of time. Great vision is a way of thinking that gets you organized and exhilarated. It’s is the difference between people who get it and people who don’t.
No one is born with great vision – it comes with practice. Vision is a muscle that you have to work out to expand. This comes from experience and exercise. Experience gives you big picture vision. Exercise gives you small picture vision.
‘Experience’ comes through participation in change initiatives. All change initiatives will make your vision better, no matter how small they might be. This is because when you see change it is powerful enough to help you foresee change. Experience is not measured in time, but rather by number of events. A twenty-five year old can have more experience than a forty-five year old, and many of them do. The key is level of participation. Any initiatives, task forces or small special projects that you can take part in or lead, you should sign up for; each one gives you more experience and better big-picture vision.
‘Exercise’ is skill set development. It is teaching yourself to think logically in a way that effectively overcomes obstacles en route to a goal. The best way to do this is learning to draw maps. Process maps, mind maps, and organizational maps are very effective in pioneering new paths. The great thing is that when you are an expert with maps, you can overcome small obstacles very quickly just by thinking through them and never even having to draw them. This is small-picture vision.
Both types of vision are needed for leadership strong enough to execute disruptive change. So get your workouts in now with experience and exercise and you will be leading your own disruptive innovation initiatives soon.