Defining Leadership

Leadership – a Passion for Vision Statements

Don Midgett asked:

“The only kind of leadership worth following is based on vision” writes Don Midgett, author of Mission and Vision Statements: Your Path to a Successful Business Future. “For a business to succeed in the unpredictable and competitive 21st century it’s important to have leaders with vision; leaders are responsible for what happens in the future. It is in their leadership that they will develop a vision statement which serves as the heart of any size company-from the self-employed to a department of a multi-tiered organizational conglomerate.”

Todd Buchholtz, in New Ideas from Dead CEOs: Lasting Lessons from the Corner Office writes of the experiences of the l0 most revered business leaders of the 20th century; their ups and downs, effects on their given industries and their relationship to modern day management practices. The singular characteristic present in his choices was their passion for something newly created, either in product or way of business. It was their passion to create something new “to excel in their chosen industry behind something they fervently believed in” above a need for wealth or power. They, like other visionaries, understood their mission and desired future or vision for their company.

A businessman named Fred Smith had an idea to deliver important documents over night. He imagined airplanes from all over the country flying in to a central hub city after midnight, sorting their cargoes and flying off. He named his business Federal Express, Fed-Ex for short. His vision statement: “A vision of truly reliable mail service.”

For Steve Jobs, of Apple Computer it was to “start a revolution in the way the average person processes information.” With the successful Nordstrom family it was to “create an experience with our stores.”

“It is the business visionary who, having focused his passion on the mission of his business and created a mission statement, then seeks to formulate and implement his desired future with a clearly stated vision statement. This is followed by effective communication, clarity and commitment, to both his management team and employees,” said Midgett. It is very important for leadership to have a mission statement that clearly defines one’s purpose, as well as a vision statement that unmistakably defines the company’s desired future.

For additional information on the importance of mission and vision statements to leadership and tools to help anyone better understand mission and vision statements and how to use them effectively, go to

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