Vision Statements are developed to steer an architectural practice toward a future state, but framed in language that reflects this desired vision as the current situation. It’s a little bit like “acting as if,” not in a smoke and mirrors way, but in a deliberate way of using the vision statement as ongoing motivation to continue growing into a firm’s ideal business.
Like Mission Statements, clients aren’t looking at the Vision Statements of architectural firms in the selection process, which is a good thing, since most don’t have one. This type of statement is an inwardly-focused message to inform people of the firm’s strategic trajectory and hopes for its future.
What is it?
An inwardly-focused statement that describes the desired future state of the firm. It identifies the end game—where you want to end up, but it’s written in the present tense as if you’re already there.
What’s it used for?
To chart a trajectory for future growth. As an inspirational tool for re-enlivening a business. To help executives and management reach consensus on strategic decisions.
Does it matter to clients?
Rarely shared with clients, unless used as a talking point for a firm leader during a business-to-business discussion with a client or client-to-be.
When is it recommended?
Uncertainty about the future. Shift in marketplace that forces change in a company’s direction. Rebranding. As a management initiative to boost morale, energy, buy-in.