The Simple Reason Most Vision Statements Suck

Most vision statements are useless. It's not because vision statements are "bad." Instead it's because they rarely stand for anything. Where most vision statements fail is that they don't acknowledge a basic rule of writing. They rely on worn out cliches and phrases. They feel generic and insipid. In short, they're the epitome of bad writing.

George Orwell once described the first rule of writing as:

Never use a metaphor, simile or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.

This is easier said then done. Cliches are easy to come up with, familiar and safe, but they're not helpful. What does "leading edge" mean? How does the goal of becoming a "thought leader" help you decide if a feature should be included/excluded?

If you can't make your vision statement concise and meaningful, then you're better off not having one.

Written by Adam Harrell on January 11, 2010

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