Today, as you go throughout your day leading others, and watching other leaders in action, be encouraged that you can make your vision a reality; you can see true transformation around you by gaining inspiration from other’s success. Consider, today, are you just a day dreamer…or are you dreaming of the day when you will realize your dreams?
Nineteenth century German general and war historian Karl Von Clausewitz noted,
In war, everything is simple, but simple is difficult.”
Von Clausewitz was speaking of the relative simplicity of
setting direction and choosing a sound strategic course to attain it,
as contrasted with the enormous difficulty of realizing one’s vision in real time and real life, in his case, in the chaos of war.
The deck is stacked against those who think that the mere idea of a better tomorrow or even the readiness to begin the journey ought to be enough to bring it to pass. I like the line from the 1952 movie, Clash by Night. Barbara Stanwyke playing the down and out character Mae Doyle, in a moment of anger and frustration, laments to Keith Andes playing her brother Joe.
What do you want, Joe, my life history? Here it is in four words; big ideas, small results.”
Sadly, many leaders share in Mae’s life history. While they have no problem generating big ideas (some mistakenly think this suffices for the work of vision casting), they have great difficulty making these ideas work in the real world (executing strategies).
Being a visionary,” to paraphrase Microsoft founder Bill Gates is trivial.”
Gates saw the future clearly and responded to the great opportunities it presented by creating a company (Microsoft) to deliver on his vision.
He succeeded where others failed not because he was a visionary, and not even because he was a brilliant strategist—he is both—but because he was able to make his vision and the strategies that flowed from it, work in the real world of computers, dollars and customers.
In simple terms, Bill Gates executed his strategies, and consequently realized his vision.
He built a company of aligned and motivated people who shared his vision and worked smart and hard to make it happen.
Another visionary, Bill Hybels, states:
Visionary people face the same problems everyone else faces; but rather than get paralyzed by their problems, visionaries immediate commit themselves to finding a solution.”
Check back to our blog for more on leadership, motivation, vision and the execution that leads to success.
About the Author: Mark McCloskey
Mark is a graduate of Miami University (BA) and Bethel Seminary, Minnesota (MDiv). He earned his PhD at the University of South Florida in the College of Education, Department of Leadership Development. His focus of study was organizational leadership, adult education, and research and measurement.