By Michael Halperin

Vision in EOS® is about alignment – making sure everyone on the leadership team and, ultimately, everyone in the organization is crystal clear where the organization is going and how it will get there.

During Vision Building™, we answer eight questions that together define the company’s vision, providing that alignment. One of those eight is what I call the Finish Line to the Marathon: the 10-Year Target™.

In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins tells us that great companies are great goal setters. And it begins with what he calls a BHAG: a Big, Hairy, Audacious Goal. The 10-Year Target is a company’s BHAG. But it is also much more than that.

GETTING EVERYONE ON BOARD WITH YOUR VISION

When you cascade your vision down through your organization, the 10-Year Target does two very important things:

  1. It makes sure that everyone is marching in the same direction. In every organization, there are lots of important goals. But the 10-Year Target is one REALLY BIG goal… the one thing everyone in the organization needs to support and align with. In many organizations, people may have different and varying ideas about what the organization should do (and some of those ideas are driven by natural, ambitious self-interest). The 10-Year Target ensures that all of those ideas and ambitions are aligned to a single, common purpose. If someone’s pet project is going to accelerate the company’s ability to achieve this one, overarching goal, then tell them to put their ears back and run! But if it isn’t, then they need to step back, re-align, and get on board with where you are going.
  2. It gives people the energy to march. The 10-Year Target should be aspirational AND inspirational. It should have an “AHA” effect that leads the right people for your organization to think “Yeah, I want to be part of a company that does that” (it also can help the “wrong people” realize they don’t belong… but that’s for another blog post).

EVERY ORGANIZATION HAS ITS UPS AND DOWNS

It is often easy to keep people moving forward when things are going well. But during the lulls and the challenging times, the 10-Year Target can be a beacon that gives your people the energy to keep marching in the face of adversity. And it gives leadership confidence that your people are all marching in the same direction.

There has probably never been a more aspirational and inspirational 10-Year Target than U.S. President John F. Kennedy’s “Moon Shot Challenge”: to put a man on the moon and return him safely to earth. That target inspired a nation.

What 10-Year Target defines your “Moon Shot”?

Previously published on the Freebridge blog

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