I am fortunate to be involved with several non-profit organizations. They range from religious, to academic, to secular. Even those that are not religious know one of the passages in the Bible that deal with vision. Here is that often misquoted or misused scripture
“Where there is no vision, the people perish”.
It is found in the Old Testament in Proverbs 29:18. It is used many times from the pulpit to exhort us to catch the vision that the pastor has seen and to press us onward to the destination seen in the vision.
But I submit to you that there is a BIG difference between being a visionary and being a leader. And I ask the larger question: Is having a great vision enough? Beyond having a vision, is having one and being able to communicate it, enough?
What is a “visionary?”
Continue reading “Are You a Visionary Leader?”
My oldest grandson got glasses for the first time this week. It was really fun to observe him seeing the world around him more clearly and more vivid than ever before. He was so excited to see all the way across the family to the little daily chart for school that is taped to the laundry room door. He could read it without having to get up and walk across the room.
I think that I am down to my last pair of contact lenses. It may be worth checking my travel ditty bag for an emergency pair. But, I need to go to the optometrist and get my eyes checked. And that is one of my least favorite activities in the world.
A visit to the optometrist
I have worn glasses since very early in elementary school and I still have trouble with — “Is it better on #1, or #2? Is it better here, or here”? The doctor would flip a dial and ask me over and over again until I finally just made up an answer. I would say emphatically that #2 was better and he would turn a dial, flip a knob and ask the question again. Argh!
At first, I think about the aggravation of going to the optometrist. And then I begin to think about how great it is to be able to see clearly. Suddenly, I am reminded that it is worthwhile to go through the process of choosing between #1 and #2 about 27 times until they can get my new prescription and new contact lenses.
Reflecting on last week’s article
There was a lot of feedback from last week’s article on blind spots. And so, I guess I am just following the optical theme a little more to see where it takes me. In other words, I am wondering what we are willing to do in order to improve our leadership vision? Continue reading “Improving My Leadership Vision”
Are you too focused on the vision? Wait a minute! I am the leader. Isn’t vision one of the main things that I need to provide to my organization? — Yes! Vision is vital to the future of any organization. But just having a vision is not enough.
[shareable cite=”Kevin Bowser” text=”Vision is vital to the future of any organization. But just having a vision is not enough. #lvllc”]Vision is vital to the future of any organization. But just having a vision is not enough.[/shareable]To be clear, most organizations do not die for lack of vision. In fact, vision and goals abound in many organizations today. Consider with me for a few moments about what to do with a vision and what your role is in moving beyond having a worthy and lofty vision.
What more is there than just having a vision?
Here are the rest of the things that we need to do with a vision all along the path for our organization once we get a sense of what that vision looks like. Consider this as the “total lifecycle” of vision for you and for your organization. Continue reading “Vision Alone Is Not Enough”
We have already come to the end of the first month of the year 2016. I cannot believe how swiftly this year is progressing. Many of you made resolutions. Did you write them down? They are just ideas until you write them down. They only become real goals when you write them and commit them to paper.
May of you have a vision in your head about how 2016 would look by the time that 2017 would be knocking on the door. Having a clear vision of what or where you want to be is vitally important from a leadership perspective. But let me ask you this:
How will you make your vision a reality?
Continue reading “The Importance of Vision”
Are “vision” and “foresight” the same thing? Or, more importantly, are they synonymous with “leadership”? Let me say quickly that I do not believe that they are synonymous. Consider this as a follow up to last weeks article about a quote that has been attributed to Henry Ford. In that article I called him a “foresighted innovator.” I equated foresighted innovation with being a leader. So, does that mean that Henry Ford was therefore a man of vision? Does that mean that he was a leader by many of the other accepted leadership definitions?
I find myself reflecting this week on a Bible passage that you may hear occasionally when some other types of leaders wish to address their followers. Personally, I have seen it used when church leaders want to speak to the issue of visionary leadership. Here is that often misquoted (and occasionally misused) scripture.
“Where there is no vision, the people perish”.
It is found in the Old Testament in Proverbs 29:18. It is used many times from a church pulpit to exhort us to catch the vision that a pastor has seen and to encourage us onward to the destination that has been seen in the vision.
Having vision, communicating a vision, and catching a vision are all vital skills for leaders and followers alike. But I submit to you that there is a BIG difference between being a visionary person and being a leader.
Let me explain my thoughts this way. Continue reading “Vision, Foresight, and Observation”
My personal journey toward understanding leadership began many years ago. It began in a medium-sized church in Marietta, Georgia in 1983.
Prior to that point I had been an observer. And I had observed some incredible leaders. I would put my own father in that category. His leadership in many areas are an inspiration to me to this very day. But I have observed many different leaders in these past 32 years. I learned as much as I could from men like Bill Searcy, an entrepreneur and small business owner in the Atlanta metropolitan area. He owned a Firestone auto repair shop. I owned a piece of junk Chevy Celebrity that went through 4 sets of brakes in 2 and a half years. It was a “lemon” and I didn’t realize it. We were destined to spend time together. He taught me more about leadership than just about any one else early in my leadership journey. I owe him a great debt of gratitude.
That kind of observation over the years has shown to me that there are two distinct skill sets that are identifiable among those who would consider themselves to be leaders. There are those that “see” what needs to happen. And there are those who “make” it happen. My observation is that it is actually “vision” that provides the “what” or the goal and objective. But it is “leadership” that provides the “how” and the plan to execute the vision that has been laid out.
Let’s consider for a moment those two skill sets:
Continue reading “Vision provides the “What” – Leadership provides the “How””
We are close to Christmas Day. And we are given an opportunity each year to review the greatest story ever told. Also, there are leadership lessons that are in this story that are present if you will look for them.
Consider today some leadership lessons from the Wise Men. Continue reading “Wise Leaders Keep an Eye to the Future”