Last week I introduced our #BusinessDetox campaign and the first topic we discussed was cleaning and organizing your workspace, which we compared to detoxing the body as a whole. As we move into week two of #BusinessDetox, we will be discussing detoxing the brain of the business VMVGI, which stands for: Values, Mission, Vision, Goals and Inspiration.
These five are the considered the brain of the business because they provide direction for the business.
Like the brain, it is very important to make sure we don’t get outdated by keeping up with all of the changes that occur in customers’ preferences and wants. It is critical for a company to revisit these often to ensure that the base of the business is set on serving its clientele the best it can.
Spending time developing these five core concepts of a company can be very helpful in the long run. Many times when companies face a problem or hit a wall, reflecting on these elements can help find a proper solution. Moreover, developing VMVGIs can guide businesses toward growth.
On one TED Talk Tuesday, @solutionsSBC posted a TED Talk by Simon Sinek. The talk revolves around the question "Why do you believe what you believe?" I highly recommend watching this video if you haven’t already; moreover, it's a good idea to revisit the video when you are developing your VMVGI.
Creating your VMVGI
Values: When walking into an interview, many are prepared to answer the question "what are three words that describe you?” This question can be applied when thinking about the values of a company. How do you want people to describe your company? For example, if I owned a photo printing business I would want my customers to tell their friends that my business prints good quality photos quickly and that my employees are very friendly. I would then extract that my photo printing business’ values would be quality, speed/efficiency, and customer service. Unfortunately, approximately every business in the world can say that these three are its values; thus, defining what these words mean for your business is important. Defining broad terms adds significance to what they mean for that individual business. Also, these definitions will help when looking at the goals of the company in step four.
For mission and vision statements... my main strand of advice is: keep it simple. Try to stay away from writing confusing and long sentences. A fifth grader should be able to understand you mission and vision statements. Your mission and vision are not only there to educate your clients but also to remind your employees of your founding principles... you don't want your employees looking at something convoluted. You want a strong statement that will inspire your workers to strive to do their best.
Mission: Focus on your overarching task. Why does your business exist? Develop a straightforward sentence that introduces the purpose of your business.
Vision: Focus on what your business aspires to achieve. What do you intend to do? Write out what your hopes are for the business.
Goals: I am a very big fan of using the SMART goals template because it is a methodical way to define what you want and map out how you will achieve it.
Specific – Focus on defining your goals, do not just state a broad goal that cannot be measured.
Measurable – Make sure you are able to measure your progress and success.
Action-oriented – What steps will you take to reach goals.
Realistic – Although you want to strive for great things, make sure your goals are reasonable for the time limit you have set.
Time-bound – Set a time limit by which your goal(s) needs to be achieved.
Also, make sure you are distinguishing your short-term and long-term goals. Short-term should be within the following few months whereas long-term can be anytime after there and beyond.
The first four of the five are topics that have been covered over and over again but the importance of inspiration is not emphasized enough.
Inspiration: Finding the source of your inspiration can seem difficult, but we used to do it when we were kids all the time. Kids gather and collect pictures of what they like, these pictures can be toys, athletes, nature/scenery, food or anything that catches the eye really…. Well, I think children have brilliant minds…
If we dig deeper we can analyze the message behind the images we are drawn to.
Images we connect with may reveal more about our psychology than we think… One who loves puppies and images of puppies may reveal a sign of valuing companionship and loyalty… images we are drawn to can indicate our aspirations and help us move forward with our businesses.
Many times organizations get so overwhelmed with work they lose track of their basic principles; however, it is important to remember that businesses who do not stray away from their founding principles are bound to conduct better business and in return gain more business. Revisit your VMVGIs at least once every year and don’t lose sight of what inspires you and your business to move forward and strive for more.
I challenge you to pay attention to the images, scenes, and moments on the internet or throughout your day that catch your eye… ask yourself why that image caught your eye, try to assess the deeper meaning behind the image or moment that caught your attention and captivated your thoughts. These images, especially those related to other businesses can act as hints of how to take your business to the next level. Post your responses on our Facebook/Twitter pages with #CaughtMyEye @solutionsSBC