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Sharing the vision

Creating a company vision should be a priority for all businesses. Without a clear vision, which both employers and employees can feel a part of, less strategic planning will occur and employee engagement will not be as strong as it could be.

A vision does not have to be very complex; it can be written on one or two sides of A4. The vision should set out the overall purpose of the organisation, where it wants to be in the future and the values that are most important to you. It can be included in the business plan and linked to individual performance targets, sometimes via team plans. A company vision will enable strategic planning by clearly stating some longer-term goals.

Senior managers and employers will often create the outline vision and line managers will give the plan context by showing how employees fit into the 'big picture'. Employees should have the opportunity to feed back their own ideas, so that the initial plan becomes a shared vision. This will help strengthen connections between people at all levels of the organisation. A shared vision will also provide people with a sense of purpose and increase their desire to work for the organisation.

Visions can sometimes become outdated, or appear overly aspirational in the face of pressing workplace problems, particularly when companies are struggling for survival. Sometimes this can mean there is a need to set new short-term targets for how the business will look in one month, six months or a year from now.

The Acas Advisory booklet - The People Factor - engage your employees for business success, shows how it's possible to make the employer-employee relationship positive and productive, and how transmitting vision and values can help a business. Acas provides training on how to Developing a high performance team by focusing on leadership and employee engagement.

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