Sharing Your Vision

Dear Christian Radio,

I once heard a preacher say, “God said it. I believe it. That settles it.”

Well, almost.

When it comes to casting a great vision for your organization, even if it’s God given, there is still the tiny matter of how you share that vision with others and how you get them on board. Therein lies the conundrum. How do you communicate your vision in an inspiring way?

Vision is everything. When people get it—and are inspired by it—you can take them along with you, even in the face of impossible odds. Without vision, it’s tough to get someone to follow you anywhere.

To really cast a vision that inspires, you need to get outside of yourself. You must understand your audience and how they are likely to receive the information your vision conveys. For you, the vision may be deeply personal and you may even find it hard to put into words at times. For that reason, start a dialog with your team; their feedback will help you better convey the vision God has placed in your heart when it’s time to actually put it in writing.

A vision is an emotional thing. A great vision inspires others by making them feel a strong, positive emotion. Consider Compassion International’s vision of, “releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name.” That grips me every time I read it. Kids in poverty are finding freedom, hope, and new life.

Your vision is also more than just pure emotion. It can be communicated numerically or even geographically to make an impact.  For example, “1 billion lives in 5 years” is the vision of the #ENCW Project. We’ve set a very specific, defined goal that inspires the Christian radio industry because it’s so big and inclusive. This is a measurement, tactic, and system designed to get something done that frankly, most of us in Christian radio have always wanted to do…work together. And therein lies the emotion. It answers the question that asks, “Can we really do that?” To think that we can truly come together and make an impact like that is exciting!

A vision has to be clear. After all, vague visions don’t move people very far for very long. Be specific, stake a claim, and take a stand. Your vision can be broad, but it must remain clear so it doesn’t create confusion. Therefore, it’s imperative that you carefully craft your vision statement as well as any additional communications that support your vision. Write your vision using a single, clear voice. Do not construct your vision by committee—remember…it’s your vision. Ineffective vision statements often come from committees—committees whose well-meaning input turns your race horse of a vision into more of a camel.  This happens because committees can struggle with decisive decision making.  While trying to decide how high the back of your horse should be, they end up putting in a ridiculous hump—or sometimes even two—as a compromise. Now, instead of a sleek, powerful animal, you are lashed to a lumbering, meandering beast that lacks the speed and direction you originally envisioned.

Great visions engage their audiences. They make you want to come along for the ride. They inspire you to get up and do something, and beckon you to get involved. Who doesn’t want to solve one of the world’s biggest problems? What Christian leader isn’t interested in helping children in poverty, providing clean water to the thirsty, making peace among enemies, or rescuing people from the clutches of hell? Great visions stir us to make a difference because, in them, we see a cause we can believe in. I encourage you to find your vision, refine it, and cast it upon the world.

Dear Christian Radio…

  1. Carefully think about what God has called you to do, and discuss it thoroughly with your team. Allow others to help you articulate what the Lord has put on your heart.
  2. Think about how to impact the heart. Your vision must both inspire, and stir emotions.
  3. Use clear, bold language to share your vision and describe it so there is no confusion about where you are headed.
  4. Craft a vision statement with a singular, uncompromising voice.
  5. Make sure your vision engages its intended audience and inspires them to take action.

#ENCW–

Jerry Grimes
Vice President of Creative Services
Positive Alternative Radio

 

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