Vision Versus Implementation

When a vision is shared and agreed upon, that’s a good feeling. A direction has been laid out. Metaphorically, the compass has a true north to point towards. What confuses people sometimes is the difference between a vision and an implementation of that vision.

What’s the risk? Who cares? Well, let’s come up with a crazy simple example. Let’s say the vision is to go after fruit. The leader says:

We want fruit.

So, someone eventually says,

We need to do these things to get oranges. It’s what the leader wants. Don’t you support our fruit vision?

The vision was changed into an implementation. What even compounds the confusion is that the leader had suggested that for a specific team, the implementation of the vision will probably be apples.
Now, it’s easy to see the error in this case when dealing with apples and oranges. It can be harder when a generic word like “initiative” is used.

In this case, what can help is to add on “vision” or “implementation” as needed. For example, someone can propose that a specific team support the “initiative-vision” by using this specific “initiative-implementation.” If a certain implementation doesn’t work, one can try a different implementation without throwing out the whole vision.

Separating out the the vision versus the implementation enables a certain amount of freedom and likelihood of success. It makes the vision more resilient, adaptable, and much more likely to succeed as it gets more fully embraced within the entire group.

May your visions bear fruit. Try not to go bananas while going after it.

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