When you lead a team or own a business, be it real estate or not, you won’t have progress or growth without a well-formed vision. At least, that’s what people say, right? If you’ve ever been to any kind of business seminar or leadership retreat, you’ve heard speakers or coaches talk about it. Maybe they challenged you to create a vision board, and maybe you’ve even put one together. If you’ve ever developed some kind of business strategy, you probably gave some thought to what your overall vision is, for your business and your life.
For all the importance placed on having a vision, it’s still one of those words we use in business that has an unclear meaning. I think this must do in part with how hard it is to define. Many people use “vision” interchangeably with terms like “goals,” “plans” and “desires.” But I think defining vision like this misses a key aspect of what makes vision valuable, and to find that missing aspect we have to go back in time.
“Vision” first came into English usage in the 12th century, from French and Latin. In Latin, it had to do only with the ability to see. As it moved into French and eventually English, it came to mean something a little different. It described the sight of something imaginary or even supernatural, often as part of a dream. Thus, one who experienced this phenomenon would “have a vision.”
Visions were not for everyone. In stories, visions are typically reserved for a chosen few, the prophets and mediums and fortune tellers. Often a vision is not actively sought out; rather it is given by some higher power. Good or bad, such visions are glimpses of things not as they are, but as they could be.
Maybe this all feels too mystical for a column about running a real estate team, but I bring it up to illustrate the true value of having a vision for your business. What else can we learn from exploring this word?
1. Visions aren’t reality—yet.
When defining your own personal vision, there is no rule that says you have to be realistic. A vision is not a goal or a plan. No part of it has to be feasible or attainable—at least from where you currently stand. It doesn’t even have to represent specific things you want to earn or achieve. It is a picture of things as they could be. This is your opportunity to dream, so don’t put limits on what that dream could be.
2. Visions lead to actions.
Smart goals and detailed plans are both necessary for achieving any significant progress in your business, but it will be your overall vision that will motivate you to keep pursuing those goals and plans once you encounter resistance. Focusing on and communicating your vision with your team can help inspire them to do their best work and take initiatives to improve their success.
3. Visions are gifts of inspiration.
Whether you believe in a higher power or not, you’ve likely had at least a few moments of inspiration: times where an idea strikes you seemingly out of the blue, not coming from any source you can define. These moments of inspiration—these visions, if you will—are gifts to be treasured. They can lead you to pursue avenues in business and in life that you might never have considered otherwise. Your vision could be something concrete, like a specific income representing a level of stability for your family, or something less definable, like a feeling. Whatever it looks like, don’t doubt your vision—chase it by creating a plan to make it real.
Have you had a vision about your life and your business? Do you have dreams about what your life and business could be, even if currently you don’t see a road to make those dreams reality? A bold vision can lead you to lay the groundwork for something truly remarkable, something you wouldn’t have dared to approach otherwise.
Where could the right vision lead you?
Verl Workman is the founder and CEO of Workman Success Systems, a real estate consulting company that specializes in performance coaching and building highly effective teams. Contact email@example.com for more information and free downloadable resources.