Someone wakes you from a sound sleep and asks you what is your MSP vision statement. What do you tell them? If you’re the CEO, you can probably rattle it off easily.
But what about your employees? Do they know where the company is going and how they fit in, or are they simply a sprocket in the daily works?
If that’s the case, you’re missing a huge opportunity to grow your company’s value and to inspire your employees to contribute to that growth.
Never underestimate the power of vision
One time, I worked for an MSP where the boss had a very difficult time articulating the company’s vision and direction. As you can imagine, this led to much frustration on my part, and that of other employees. And, worse, it impacted the business’ ability to function.
This business owner was not alone however. Lack of vision and direction has become increasingly common in the business world, and can impact large corporations and SMBs, alike.
For the past 20 plus years, I’ve worked for several businesses ranging from small MSPs to multi-billion dollar international corporations. Not once have I encountered a clearly defined company vision that was driving decisions.
In each, management was focused on daily operations and maintenance projects to keep the business running. Occasionally, there would be an acquisition project, but it was rare.
Yet, we know when a business commits to its vision and charges the entire organization to adopt it, incredible things can happen. Look at Apple, Google, or Microsoft. If you review their vision statements, you’ll see short, simple phrases that say exactly what the company wants to accomplish.
- Apple: “To make the best products on earth, and to leave the world better than we found it.”
- Google: “To provide access to the world’s information in one click.”
- Microsoft: “To help people and businesses throughout the world realize their full potential.”
The commitment to reaching that vision is on display for all to see, and each company pursues that goal with singular focus.
Companies with a strong vision have buy-in with all stakeholders, from ownership down to the newest employee. It answers the same questions I struggled with, like “Where is the company going? What is my role?”
Humans have a fundamental desire to contribute. They want their work to be a meaningful part of something important.
A solid vision statement lends itself to that desire, and it makes it easy to attract strong performers who want to succeed and be part of that future. Few endeavors are more exciting than working towards a common goal/vision where everyone shares in the effort and achievement.
A 3-step MSP vision statement healthcheck
Getting in tune with your vision statement should not be painful or a struggle. You’re just making sure it still works for the business.
- Pull out your vision statement and review it. Does it still serve the organization and the direction the company is going in? Does it describe the long-term goal for the company in simple language? Is it a goal you can still get behind and pursue?
- If it needs a rewrite, get clear on the goal. Ask your people for ideas and feedback. Make this an inclusive process. Ultimately, you’re the one with the final word, but there’s no better way to get buy-in from everyone than to have them contribute to the vision they’ll be working towards.
- Once the course is set, energize it. Keep it in the forefront of everyone’s mind by using it in daily communications. Guide decisions by measuring them against the vision statement. Will they help accelerate growth, or slow things down?
And if you need to change directions, the vision statement isn’t set in stone. By actively using it to inform decisions in the business, you’ll know if it’s still pointing in the right direction. In the end, the future of the company lies in the ability of senior management to inspire, lead, and direct. A strong, active vision statement is good starting point.
Review yours today to assess whether or not it still works for the company. If not, you have an opportunity to define or clarify the future of the organization. Taking the time to do it could mean the difference between your MSP thriving or simply surviving.
Photo: Who is Danny / Shutterstock