Working with others is inherently challenging. The more time you spend with others in your company, the more time there is to recognise differences in goals and working styles. It is up to leaders and managers to unify these personalities under a team vision statement that will reflect everyone’s aspirations and professional development goals.
According to Forbes, engaged teams showcase 21% higher profitability for their companies, with 59% lower turnover rate and a 41% reduction in absenteeism. Data also shows that only 15% of employees are actively engaged at their workplaces globally, showcasing a serious employee management issue. Given how valuable a team vision statement can be for your internal communications and engagement, let’s take a look at how to write an inspiring and unifying statement properly.
Why a Vision Statement?
What exactly is a team vision statement? Based on the Cambridge Dictionary, a vision statement is “a statement of what a company or an organisation would like to achieve in the future”. In our case, a “team” vision statement is focused on a small group of individuals working in the same department and on the same projects. Some of the most memorable vision statements include is Tesla’s “To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy” and Nike’s “To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.”
Regardless of whether you work in HR, IT, or e-commerce, an inspiring team vision statement will be beneficial. It can be used as a beacon, and unifying goal that everyone on the team will use for day-to-day inspiration. Having this additional team component in place will ensure more fluid mitigation of conflict and crises in your team while also boosting everyone’s engagement. Besides that, several vital benefits will manifest in your team’s workflow:
• Set objective standards and expectations for your team
• Better alignment of everyone’s individual goals with the company’s values
• Positive word of mouth about your internal employee practices
• Sense of identity and agency of employees on your team
• Improved collaboration and communication with other teams
• Higher retention and improved leadership development opportunities
Writing an Inspiring Team Vision Statement
1. Make the Writing Process a Group Effort
The crucial element of writing a team vision statement is that you do not do it in a vacuum. A team vision statement belongs to everyone on your team, and as such, it should be written in a group meeting. According to Harvard Business Review, the only visions that take hold are shared visions, and employees want to see their leaders and managers as visionaries. Organize a team meeting and make the team vision statement a priority on your agenda. Make it clear that such an addition to your team dynamic will make your workflow and teamwork more effective and focused going forward.
Content marketing and writing expert, Estelle Liotard spoke on the topic: “Writing a high-quality team vision statement is about putting everyone’s writing skills and ideas to the test,” With the help of a thesis writing site, and aligning individual goals with company goals, this is a shared effort that contributes to a collective vision for the team’s future.
2. Incorporate Your Company’s Values
While the team vision statement you write should reflect each team member’s aspirations and goals, it should also align with your company’s values. Take your company’s mission statement and goals into consideration and see if you can come up with adjectives and nouns which will coincide with them.
Your team is a part of a larger whole, and writing a team statement that will reflect both your team, and the company’s goals will help. Doing so will ensure that your team is representative to outside parties and exhibits the best of what your company has to offer. Failing to align your team vision statement with the larger picture of what your business is about can have adverse effects and lead to demotivation.
3. Make Your Goals Actionable and Achievable
A team vision statement has to be practical and easily understandable to anyone who reads it. This is where the writing process gets tricky, as you need to set clear goals and use the right words to express them succinctly. Use SMART to set your team’s goals and actualise them into words.
Going back to the examples of vision statements we’ve listed before, yours should also be personalised and use the right pronouns. Write an inclusive team vision statement, especially if your business is in open support of social causes such as LGBT+ rights, gender equality, etc. Remember – the team vision statement will be openly available to anyone remotely familiar with your team, so write a statement you will all be proud of.
4. Simplicity Leads to Better Cohesion
Whether your team specialises in customer support or software development, the vision statement you write should be as simple as possible. Limit the writing to a single sentence from the get-go; an emphasis on simplicity will also make your brainstorming sessions more creative.
Once you arrive at a draft of your team statement, you should also try to remove any unnecessary words which may create confusion. Play with your wording, order of information presented, and the nouns and verbs you use to express your team’s vision. If your vision is simple, easy to remember, and practical for everyday application, your team is going to become more cohesive and like-minded.
5. Make Several Drafts Before Finalising Your Statement
Lastly, the first draft of your team vision statement will have potential, but it will most likely still be flawed for extended implementation. Use the opportunity you have to create a strong team vision that isn’t short-term and can be used for a prolonged period.
Create several versions of the statement and have your members pitch in with feedback and ideas on how to improve it further. The best way to arrive at a vision that everyone will agree on is to treat it as a team-building exercise and not as “work”. The role of the team vision is to make your work more enjoyable, focused, and motivating- not to be a crutch to slow you down. Eliminate unviable drafts of your vision until you arrive at the perfect one and start implementing it immediately.
When it comes to how original your team vision statement is – don’t worry about it. Your statement has to be “your own”, but it doesn’t necessarily have to break new ground in copywriting. Go for a vision that suits your team’s sensibilities and personalities, their professional goals and reasons for being in your team. Inspiration is a difficult element to pinpoint, but with some writing practice, you will come up with a team statement everyone will be happy with.
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