Vision and Mission


The top of the Luffy Framework is devoted to the Vision and Mission. These provide guidance and focus for the development of Objectives, for which Strategic Planning is done. Simply put Vision is a desired future state of an organization and a Mission is a collection of related Objectives which advance the organization towards that Vision. Not every organization is going to require a Vision or even a Mission. If there is only one Objective for example, then it is interchangeable with the Mission. Or if you have a project, which is a temporary organization, then there might not be a desired future state and as a result no Vision is necessary. I go into greater detail about Vision and Mission in a post titled Managing by Purpose.

There are two methods for developing the Vision and Mission. Neither one of them are correct or incorrect, depending on the individual circumstances of the organization you are building the framework for. If the organization is new, like for example a startup or pilot project, you may not be entirely sure what the Vision or Mission might be. You may only be aware of a simple objective. This is fine and many organizations have grown from the desire to accomplish a single objective. Google for example sprang from a university project. I doubt that the Vision or Mission were clear to the founders when they started on that project. They had an objective, which when completed, led to another and another. I call this Exploratory Frameworking in that one works on an Objective and then if needed develops a Vision and Mission. To properly define it, Exploratory Frameworking is the gradual development of an organizational Vision and Mission based on one or more independent Objectives.

Guided Frameworking is the development of Objectives based on a predetermined Vision and Mission of the organization. If we have a Vision, then we can determine a series of connected Missions that lead to a successful realization of that Vision. These Missions are themselves collections of Objectives that need to be satisfied to complete the Mission. A visual representation of this hierarchy can be seen below.


As a rule of thumb, if you are managing a current organization then you are most likely going to be using Guided Frameworking. You may have to do some converting, like translating organizational desires into a Vision. If you are starting a company or project, you may choose to use Guided Frameworking, but Vision and Mission will most likely change dramatically as you move forward. Exploratory Frameworking might be of greater benefit since it allows you to shape Vision and Mission based on the progress and learning from your work on various Objectives.

Both methods lead to the development of a set of Objectives, which is how we initiate the Strategic Planning process. You may find out that the Objectives in place are not obtainable. That the resources required exceed those available, or that the capabilities cannot be acquired. This might necessitate revisiting the Mission and perhaps even the Vision.



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