Principle 1:
Reinventing the Vision

Successful entrepreneurs said that the entrepreneurial vision must be reinvented. They view their vision of the company as a guide or "big picture" that steers and aligns the activities of the company and the employees. They say that their visions changed as the company matured. Many Entering and Emerging entrepreneurs have a simple "vision" of a positive P&L statement. The Emerging entrepreneur frequently has a more abstract picture of where he/she sees the company going. A clear, albeit abstract, vision is critical for providing direction for the entire company.

REINVENTING THE VISION: MAXIMS

  1. Use the vision to motivate and challenge yourself and your people
  2. Imagine a vision of excellence
  3. Change the vision to take advantage of opportunities
  4. Let your cutomers and employees shape your vision
  5. Use the vision to create a common purpose

Maxim 1: Use the vision to motivate and challenge yourself and your people.

Successful entrepreneurs feel a strong need to be challenged, as well as the need to have a goal or a dream to strive for - a moving target of sorts. Using the vision to channel energy into new and exciting directions provides a source of motivation for successful entrepreneurs and their employees. They use their vision for the company to challenge complacency and create a reason and the necessary focus to move forward and grow.

Maxim 2: Imagine a Vision of Excellence.

Successful entrepreneurs distinguish themselves from those who are unable to overcome the brick wall by their intense drive to create the best company possible and excel for reasons other than just personal or financial gain. They have role models, short-term and long- term, and know exactly what and where they want their companies to be. Achievement of excellence in their companies is a key source of enjoyment and satisfaction, as well as motivation.

Maxim 3: Change the vision to take advantage of opportunities as they arise.

Successful entrepreneurs say that their visions changed as their companies matured. Changing technology, changing competitors, and various problems all create new perspectives and new opportunities. The successful entrepreneur's vision is actively adjusted as necessary. Their visions started out based on what they saw as possible given where their businesses were at the time. As their businesses grew, the successful entrepreneurs' visions grew. The continuous shaping of their visions allow successful entrepreneurs to see opportunities past the brick wall.

Maxim 4: Let your customers and employees shape your vision.

Successful entrepreneurs are concerned about such things as the values and character represented by the company and the employees, as well as the standing of the company in the local community. Values and character, they feel, are important concerns to their customers and employees - their greatest assets. As a result, successful entrepreneurs allow their concern for customers and employees shape their vision in an aesthetic sense. In turn, the response of customers and employees reinforces the entrepreneurs' thinking.

Maxim 5: Use the vision to create a common purpose that tells your people where you want them to take your company.

Successful entrepreneurs stress the importance of communicating their visions for the company to everyone in the organization. They say that employees must be motivated and aligned toward a common purpose to create a unified front. A focused group of employees, with everyone moving in the same, desired direction, was a key factor in their growth. It is understood that the plans will likely be adjusted along the way, but the destination is known by all.

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