Quality Coaching for High Tech Startups by Dr. Octavian Schatz
call me today: +49 8254 98975

Turning Ideas into Value: The Importance of Visions

Ideas are plentiful, the art is to make them come true

As former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt once put it, „a person who has visions should go see a doctor“. Mr. Schmidt was famous for his soberness and his sense for realism, yet this quote probably wasn’t meant too seriously. Without visions, most achievements from the first manned flight by the Wright brothers to the Apollo 11 landing on the moon would not have been possible. Visionary people are catalysts that increase the pace of development by helping to create new products and technologies.

Visions can serve as your internal compass
Put simply, visions are not just long term personal goals but rather the basis for the evolution of your team and sometimes of mankind as a whole. Today’s visions will potentially become tomorrow’s reality – but irrespective of whether or not they ever come true, visions motivate you to bring out the best of your abilities, giving you a cause to get up in the morning and constantly try to improve the status quo. So there is certainly no need to be cured of visions – on the contrary, doctors should prescribe them as a simple recipe for a fulfilled life.

Mating your visions with reality
To be successful, your visions have to be shared with as many of your contemporaries as possible. Now experience has shown that inspiring others with your visions is the harder the farther you are away from the current mainstream thinking. So if you want to be credited for your ideas during your life time, that will be a bit more likely when you are developing a new combustion engine than an interstellar rocket propulsion system. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t be afraid to present bold visions and fight for their realization. If you want to motivate people to work for you or to invest into your ideas, they must be able to see the fire burning in you. But most importantly, you must not mix up visions and wishful thinking. If you become aware of setbacks in the development or third party innovations that could be a major threat for the realization of your project, you have to tell the truth. If people believe in your integrity, they are more inclined to still support your visions in times of difficulty. There is no shame in failing if you have tried your best and have remained honest.

The 4 measures for maximizing your success
The reality is, even though visionaires are indispensible for initiating new concepts, they are often not the ones who bring an idea to fruition. Actually, this is not necessarily bad unless someone else reaps the benefit of your work. But of course it is much more rewarding if it’s you who profits from making your visions come true. There are a number of measures you can take to maximize your chances for success:

  1. It’s generally more advantageous to team up with pragmatists who act methodically than build up a team of ardent followers who don’t dare questioning your ideas.
  2. Invite your team members to find flaws in your approach and have it constantly checked against reality
  3. Encourage open discussions in your team – this may help to find alternative solutions in case your first approach gets stuck.
  4. Treat everyone fair but also don’t hesitate to dismiss members who pursue their own interests before they can start poisoning the working atmosphere in the team.

Happy starting up. Yours sincerely,

Octavian Schatz

Bild: ©iStockphoto.com / t_kimura

Comments are closed.