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How to Build and Develop a Strong Vision for Your Team

Sean: Now that you mentioned that you have to engage them, show them the numbers, be transparent. I’m sure the vision is very involved in that entire ordeal. And now I’m going to actually tackle that question cause it’s time I think to tackle that question, how do you craft or help to craft the vision for a team?

Because you mentioned that it’s part of the EOS process. That’s part of the system. And I think that’s the starting point. It is so difficult in my opinion, to just go into a business, study their entire thing. And then craft the vision statement with them. And I’m sure you have a lot of iterations for the vision statement because the visionary founder would say, Oh, this is the vision.

Oh, that’s the vision. Oh, we have another vision here. We all want to do this. All of these big things. We all want to tackle all of these elephants in the room. How does the process look like? What would you say about having to guide them as a business mentor or a coach in crafting the vision? Is it necessary to have a vision, a coach or a mentor for a business person to be able to craft an effective vision? So that there’s two questions there.

Jeff: What I would definitely say the vision itself is very necessary, but at the same time, what would it be if I could tell you that your vision should fit on two pieces of paper? It should only answer eight questions.

So it’s actually very simple because a lot of times, again, it goes back to what we were talking about the process before. It doesn’t need to be a six page strategic plan that you spend months and months and months building. And it goes into a desk drawer and nobody sees any collects dust until next year when we bring it out and dust it off again and say, Oh, we were supposed to be doing this for the last year kind of a thing. 

Again, looking at simplicity, we don’t want those complex enterprise level corporate level kind of systems. We’re a small entrepreneur system. We want to be agile. We want to have that smaller team to be able to adjust and be flexible. But at the same time we need the functionality of those big systems.

So when I’m looking at a vision for somebody we’ve actually got a tool that’s called the vision traction organizer, that’s basically building the vision component with traction, putting it all together. Like I said, a simple two page document is all it is there.The idea is that we’ll sit down or I’ll sit down with the leadership team typically over a couple of days.

Knock this out, craft this out kind of a thing there. And then on an annual basis, we’ll come back and review it. But it’s really a matter of saying, at least quarterly, you take these two pages and basically say, okay, this is who we are. This is what we’re doing in front of the entire team. They’ve got access to it.

I even coach teams to say, okay, when you’re hiring on a new employee, bring this vision statement with you right there. Actually, have that as part of the interview process to say, okay, again, this is who we are. This is where we’re trying to go. All that kind of things. So that again, they know what they’re buying into, but it’s like I said, it’s eight simple questions is all it is.

So it’s first one is what is your core value? So we’ve kind of already talked about that before I’m feeling okay. Values of integrity, continuous improvement, simplicity. Things like that. What makes up who you are kind of a thing from a core value standpoint? Second question is, what is your core focus?

So again, I look at it is if you look at, for example, the sun and the amount of energy, the amount of energy that that’s producing yet, typically in the worst case, we go lay outside for too long, we get a sunburn kind of a thing. It’s not major impact versus if you look at a laser, that’s got fraction kind of a thing, only a few kilowatts there of energy.

Because it’s so tightly focused, you sit there and cut through steel, cut through diamonds, and that’s what we want to be. From our business standpoint, we don’t have the resources to be the sun with that much energy. We’ve got to focus on a limited amount of resources to say, okay, exactly, what is our purpose, our cause, our passion? What are we trying to do from a business standpoint and exactly what’s the niche? What’s the singular kind of focus that we’re going after? And like we were talking earlier, anytime we’re evaluating something new, a new product line, a new market we need to go back and look.

Okay, does that fit our purpose? Does that fit our niche? Do we want to maybe venture out and widen that or whatever? But still most likely if it’s not fitting that niche, that core purpose who we are, then it’s not a good fit for us right now. So again, keeping that laser focus of our core focus right there as a business, then we look at saying, okay, what’s your 10 year target and ten’s really kind of number, but it’s still it’s, it’s the big goal out there to say, okay, this is what we’re trying to reach 10, 15, whatever the year is, it’s still out there on the horizon. It’s still kind of fuzzy. It’s very high level. It’s not a detailed plan or anything. It’s literally saying, Hey, we want to have X new offices. We want to be a nationwide company. It’s, it’s something way on out there. It’s something very, very, just something that everybody can get excited about.

Something, a big picture out there that says, Hey, this is where we’re going. Everybody’s on the  same path here to reach here. But it’s not really detailed again, it says, just a quick little target and quick little picture out there. Then the, the fourth question on it is saying, okay, define your target market again.

So this is where we tie in sales and marketing, things like that to say, okay, who are we going after? What are three unique standpoints? What differentiates us from our competitors? Three key points that marketing can put into all their messages. Sales can use the exact same text, exact same message when they’re going out.

Even for that matter for me sitting in operations or sitting in, in support, when I’m sitting on a soccer field with my kids, soccer or whatever has a game and  the neighbor asked me, hey, what do you do or what makes your company different? I’ve got that language. I’ve got that verbiage that I can sit there and position the company the same way as our sales and our marketing.

Everybody’s doing so again, it’s bringing everybody into that tight focus there and it’s looking at to say, okay, our three uniques there, what is a proven process to say, okay,  what’s our process for delivering our service or our product there that we know? If we follow A, B, C, and D from a process standpoint, we’re going to be successful in delivering that process.

So from my standpoint, from a coaching standpoint, I’ve got a very clear lined out process fits on one page. I’m going to sit here and show you one sheet of paper that says, okay, this is, if you come work with me, this is what we’re going to do. And this is exactly what you’re going to get out of it. And then taking that one step further to say, okay, what’s your guarantee? Whether it’s a technology service level guarantee, whether it’s simply a guarantee that, okay, we’re going to be the best out there.

You’re going to get value of whatever, but it’s just something else to sit there and lower that barrier of entry for new customers. So we’ve got from a vision standpoint, like I said, what’s the core focus? What’s the core values? What’s the ten-year target and the target market? So that really starts building out your vision.

There. And then the second page of it, the flip side here is where we say traction. Okay, great. We’ve got a 10 year plan. We’ve got to start bringing that back down, making bite-sized chunks out of that elephant here to make it more actionable. So we’ll actually draw up a three-year picture and it’s really defined as a picture just to say, hey, yes, our ten-year targets way out here.

Okay. Where do we need to be? Draw a picture that everybody can see in their mind as to what we need to look like in three years to be on our way to that journey. And that’s really where we start pulling in some of the numbers to say, okay, what are our revenues, actual real numbers need to look like? What do our profits need to look like? What are key measurables in terms of number of clients, number of sales, number of products, markets, whatever the case may be? But still, actionable numbers here that really can start making that vision, making that long-term picture me a little bit more concrete.

And then we really start again, keep breaking that down to say, okay, that was three-year picture. Now let’s actually get a concrete one year plan. So one year is about all we can really plan on or really predict in it and with any kind of accuracy. So. Bringing in, again, those same kind of numbers, the revenue, the revenue, the profits, things like that.

And then really setting specific concrete goals that says, okay, we need to have this new product developed, or we need to have this new process lined out whatever specific goals that we’re saying. Okay. If we don’t do anything else this year, if we accomplish these. 10 goals, these five goals, this is going to be successful year.

So having those specific goals laid out really from the idea, again, like I was saying with traction, we’ve got to get everybody working on the same page that we know. Again, this is my goal. This is my objective for this year. And then we’re going to actually bring it back one more time, as in to say, okay, what’s our 90 day plan because really 90 days is what we want to look at.

I, I, I look at it as if you were cutting a, a roadway through the forest or something. You don’t just sit here at the ground level, sitting here, cutting trees forever. At some point, you’ve got to kind of climb back up and say, Hey, are we still on the right path? Are we still looking the right way? It’s a little bit easier these days with, with GPS, but still it’s you got to kind of pop up every 90 days basically and say, okay, are we still on the right trajectory, on the right path here?

But it’s really bringing back in what we refer to as rocks, but still goals at that point to say, hey, what are my goals for this 90 days that are then going to roll into my goals for the year bigger picture? We’re just trying to bring that back down. And really 90 days is the key kind of interval for us that we’re looking to say, okay, build that cycle, build that muscle memory, that habit over 90 days to say, okay, these are my goals.

If nothing else happens, this quarter. If I get these things done, it’s a successful quarter 90 days from now. We’re going to sit there. Okay. Re-evaluate. Did anything need to roll forward? What happened? Do we need to make adjustments? Plan out the next 90 days, what are the goals for the next 90 days?

And just sit there and iterate, iterate, repeat. And then the last one is really a long-term issues list kind of thing, just a running, almost bucket list to say, Hey, what, what issues are we facing? What issues do we need to deal with? And just have those again, the idea is that, okay, they’re on a list.

They’re on a piece of paper, they’re on a database kind of thing, whatever it is somewhere. Then it’s no longer in your head. You’re no longer having to keep these top of mind. Okay. What, what are we doing about this one? What’s the status on that one? And really, like I said, empowering your people and say, okay, if you see some issue right now, it may not be something we need to deal with today.

Maybe it’s going to be an issue a year down the road if we hit these numbers or something like that. But let’s go ahead and put it on the list right now. And it’s really looking at those eight things basically on an ongoing basis. It’s a living document, but those eight questions. Literally tied into a two-page document.

There is the sum total of all the vision you really need. So it’s really not that complex. The biggest thing is really trying to get the struggles I have most often is just trying to get all the people on the leadership team to really bring back in that leader, that laser focus to say, okay, this is who we are.

And it’s not necessarily a case that they’ll always a hundred percent agree, but what they need to do coming out of that meeting is say, okay, this is the company vision. It’s not necessarily, my vision versus your vision. This is the company vision. We’re all working towards this one thing. Everybody get on board and it’s that’s the biggest challenge is trying to get some of those more minor details lined out.

But the, the idea is just to keep it simple. Again, it doesn’t need to be some massive strategic plan. It doesn’t need to take you two weeks, every year, kind of a thing to go review it and put it all together. It’s literally a day or two with the leadership team on two pieces of paper is all you need there for, for, from a vision standpoint

And even from a traction standpoint, both together.

Sean: That is amazing. And I learned a lot from that. Jeff, thank you so much. That’s like free consulting for me, dude. And I’m sure you guys listening in you entrepreneurs out there listening in, you picked up a lot of wisdom from that lot of stuff and what you need to go now is to finally just make sure it’s scheduled that you and your leadership team would apply this.

Now we’re down to our last two questions. Jeff, we have had so much wisdom from you so much learnings. I want to kind of pay one thing forward in that is in the light in the advent of COVID-19 this pandemic, we have had entrepreneurs both in the startup stage.

And in the scale up phase where they’re beginning to feel the 200 pound burden on their shoulders, both of these, and even the enterprise level companies, honestly, they’re struggling out there. It’s a pandemic. If you had one big advice, what would you tell them as they struggle through?

Jeff: Well, I don’t want to minimize the pandemic or minimize the effect of it for sure.

But the reality is, business is going to struggle no matter what, like I said, whether it’s a global pandemic, whether it’s just a key employee leaving, whether it’s a shift in the market, kind of a thing, there’s going to be struggles all along. So really it, to me, it goes back to that complexity to say, okay, the market’s shrunk, the environment shrunk, we’ve got to cut back costs.

The first thing we ought to be looking at is, okay, where are we spending our money? Do we know where the money is? Do we know where our resources are going? And is there a way we can optimize that? Can we, without necessarily cutting people? Can we make our processes more efficient? Can we standardize here on certain target markets?

Make sure everybody’s laser focused to say, okay, rather than wasting resources on this big wide spectrum here, let’s bring it back in. Let’s tailor it and say, okay, what are we really good at? What are we? What’s our highest margin product? Let’s focus on those instead of on, trying to sell anything and everything out there.

So it’s really saying, okay, how can we simplify the business? How can we go back and root out some of that complexity, really brings simplicity back into it here? Then okay, if that doesn’t work then, okay. We’re looking at other cost cutting measures. But to me it’s always a case, like I said, whether it’s a pandemic or whether it’s just any time.

Always looking at, okay, how can we simplify? How can we streamline? How can we make this as simple as possible, get that complexity out? Because  that just makes it better business, no matter what, whether, whether we’re flying a hundred miles an hour or whether we’re stuck right now, kind of a thing because our market shut down or whatnot.

How can we simplify? How can we get that complexity out and make it more efficient here?

Sean: That is fantastic. Well, Jeff, we have had an amazing time with you and before I let you go, I want to know if people want to find out more about you or they want to get in touch. Where are the best places to do that?

Jeff: Well, from an EOS perspective?

Admentus is the company website. There’s a lot of resources out there in terms of the books and everything out there, the tools the VTO is actually out there. You can get that and download that. So there’s a lot of those tools really through Admentus. And then the flip side is I’m actually working to, we’re actually launching a new community, launching a new podcast ourselves called “Building to Scale”, which is really for those entrepreneurs saying, okay, because if I look at my journey over time, I’ve read plenty of books.

I’ve read plenty of webinars, stuff like that, but where I get the best advice, the best information is simply from other entrepreneurs to say, Hey, I already went through this step or this, this struggle kind of thing before you, here’s how I handle it, kind of a thing. So that’s really the idea that we put together for, for building the scale is just say, Hey, community of entrepreneurs, community of people trying to go through this, this growth scaling kind of process right now together to say, Hey, what have you learned?

Because you don’t have to be some expert. I don’t even know necessarily what that means. All you’ve got to be is one or two steps ahead of somebody to say, Hey, we did this before we tried this before. Here’s a resource you might want to look at and here’s somebody you might want to talk to whatever, just that community collaboration, because a lot of times really being that entrepreneur can be a lonely place.

It’s like, okay. There everybody’s looking at me for the answers. What am I supposed to go to? Almost kind of a thing. So that’s, that’s the other resource I’d say is buildingthescale.com that we have out there for, for like I said, the podcast as well as for the community out there group as well. So two different resources, you can get me on both sides there for EOS information, but yeah, both those resources are wide out there and available for anyone wants to go look for free.

Sean: That’s awesome. And we are going to have that on the show notes. If you go to leadershipstack.com, look for the episode with Jeff Chastain and we are going to have those links on the recordings show notes. So it’s easy for you to just click on those links and you’ll be able to get into Jeff’s tons of free resources for you.

The entrepreneur. I don’t, I don’t have any idea why you wouldn’t do that. So. Do yourself a favor. Go do that. Jeff. Thank you so much. Once again, I know that your day’s about to end there and I want you to be able to relax and I’m sure that people who are tuning in right now, we have learned so much and we are better for it.

Jeff: Thank you very much.


Jeff Chastain’s Website:
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