“The vision informs the mission and gives direction to the strategy which is executed in operations via processes and controls executed and managed by people.” - Roger St Hilaire
Processes are the life veins and arteries of the organization. It is how the organization gets its core business done. These processes, when linked to the organization’s strategic objectives and executed within a controlled and efficient environment, are a key factor in an organization’s ability to succeed in its chosen business.
The current pandemic environment has triggered/catalyzed events that have affected the organization in ways that are not immediately visible. These continue to happen in the background and are usually not noticed until something else breaks or has a definable problem. Such as Business frustration with failed initiatives, rising Systems costs and a perception of low business value, being just one of the several nebulous pain points encountered within organizations today.
The desire to significantly improve the value to be gained from IT and all other processes within in organization to boost competitive advantage, be innovative, optimize assets, or create new business opportunities can call attention to the “Why are we doing this?” question. The clarification of the vision and mission of the organization, and turning that into a viable sustainable operation is the question on many an executives mind.
Mission and Vision Statements Impact on Operations
The mission and vision statements inform the organizations strategic direction and purpose. Therefore all processes and controls within the organization are impacted by them. The mission statement reflects the purpose of the company, its reason for being. It’s used to set the strategic direction for the organization and informs the world of the business of the company i.e. its unique contribution to society.
As the mission statement informs the purpose of the company, it provides guidance on all actions within the organization. In the context of processes, all processes big or small must relate to and enable the organization to achieve its mission. It therefore provides the framework or context within which processes developed and executed.
If the mission statement conveys the purpose of the company, then the vision statement says this is where it is going. The vision statement provides inspiration for the future possibilities embedded with mission. The vision forms the basis for all strategic planning activities and answers the question “Where do we want to go?” Combined they inform the purpose and strategic direction of the company.
Impact on Processes and Controls
As processes exist to carry out the business of the company, the mission and vision statements, spell out the overall goal, provide a path, and guide decision-making. It provides "the framework or context” within which the company's strategies are formulated and by extension, all processes and controls.
Connecting the Vision and Mission to the Operations
The vision and mission statements inform the direction of the company. This is translated via governance to the operations through benefits realization, resource optimization and risk optimization for the creation of value. The value creation concept of resource optimization can be translated to 4 key areas, Strategy - direction and position in the environment, Implementation - the operations and how we do what we do, Money - the financial structure the organization uses to collect funds and create value for its customers/clients. The last of these being the People - the means for all the other areas to work. This is the blood that flows through the veins and arteries of the organization.
These four areas managed well and structured enable the organization to optimize its resources and optimize risk, to deliver on the promise of the vision and realize the benefits for all the stakeholders, staff, clients, shareholders, leadership and even the vendors.
This is part one in a four part series on Operationalizing Your Vision