This is a part of a series that was created to help you define what you aspire to be as a company. This series will walk through the process, necessary roles, in addition to guides for each role to define your aspirations quickly.
Aspirations are one of the most important company level strategies in an organization. Implemented from the top-down, aspirations need your careful consideration, execution, continuous reinforcement, and ongoing support if you are going to meet your goal of having everyone in the organization live out the aspirations.
Specifically, as the company’s senior leaders, you must:
- Identify, agree on, and commit to your aspirations
- Communicate your aspirations to the entire organization
- Live your aspirations
- Help others to understand and live your aspirations
- Measure how well the company aspirations are understood and used throughout the organization and make adjustments based on this feedback
- Continuously reinforce your aspirations.
To become truly useful, aspirations must become part of your organization’s culture.
As leaders of your company, you must communicate your aspirations regularly, and act as role models by referring to the aspirations when you develop strategies, set goals, make decisions, and take action.
The key to setting good aspirations is to keep in mind that they will set the direction and give guidance to the company for a long period of time — however, that does not mean that the aspirations won’t change. While aspirations are important to get right from the onset, you also should review and adjust them on an annual basis. During the annual review, most companies will find that their aspirations are pretty well set – perhaps they need to fine-tune the wording, but for the most part, the aspirations are serving the company well. Other companies will find that they need to adjust and extend their vision. Still others will find that they have grown to the point that they need to bring their aspirations to a new level.
Next week, I’ll post the approach for expressing your newly developed aspirations to the entire organization.