I think of the vision as the 2-minute elevator speech that you’ll need when people ask you “so what is it you do again?” Having this at the tip of your tongue will come in handy in so many ways:
- chance encounters with potential customers,
- explanations to family members,
- reminding you why you’re doing this when it’s midnight and you’re facing a 9 am deadline, etc.
Don’t be fooled, creating this can be very difficult and more than a little frustrating. You can see it in your head perfectly but every time you try to tell someone or write it down it gets all scrambled. Trust me when I say that if you can’t do this then life is going to be lot more difficult and possibly much less successful than it could be.
There is no specific format for the Vision/Approach but it should be short and well-focused. Anyone should be able to read it and understand what your business is about. Here are some things that could help:
- Don’t worry about perfection or completeness at first. Write down whatever comes to mind and when there’s no more do something else.
- Keep a notebook with you and jot down thoughts when they occur to you. You’ll be surprised at the randomness of this. NOTE: Be safe! If driving repeat the thought out loud over and over until you can pull over safely and write it down. Ignore the strange looks from your passenger or even better ask your passenger to write it down for you!
- Focus on how your business can help your potential customer. Your capabilities, certifications, etc. are important but don’t assume your potential customer will know how they benefit them. Explain how each one helps your customer but keep it short.
- This is your business’ resume and like a resume its sole purpose is to get you the “interview”, i.e. a contact (email, letter, phone call, meeting, etc.) with your potential customer
Next: More detail on the specific operations identified in the Tiny Business Mentor