As your business grows, it’s important to have clear goals of what you want your business to do. You need to know what you are working toward.

A vision statement is a way to write out your business goals in a short, understandable way. You can use it internally to keep yourself on track and motivate your employees.

To be clear, a vision statement is different than a mission statement. The vision statement tells your goals. But, the mission statement tends to be a little longer, and it explains more about how you plan to meet your goals.

Your business will languish and flounder without a vision statement. If you don’t have a vision statement, you are basically saying you have no plans or goals for your business.

A well-crafted vision statement can help you focus your business’s efforts. But often, business owners try to put too much information in their vision statements. They include too many goals or impractical goals. You must narrow down your vision statement to make it effective.

Tips for narrowing down your small business’s vision statement

As you write your vision statement, use the following tips to make it clear, powerful, and effective.

Keep it short

Your vision statement should be short and to the point. A vision statement should simply explain where you want your business to go. It shouldn’t be a pages-long document of how your business will reach its goals. That’s a business plan, not a vision statement.

At most, a vision statement should be two sentences long. And I’m not talking about two epic, run-on sentences. Just two average sentences that are easy to read. If you can’t condense your vision down to two sentences, you probably have too many or too broad of goals.

Be ambitious

When you are setting goals and writing your vision statement, be ambitious. Your goals must excite you.

Imagine your business in the future. What do you want it to look like? What products or services do you want to provide? Who are your customers? What impact do you want to make on clients?

Think big. Don’t set goals that are so small that you will reach them next week. Set long-term goals that will help you focus your business for the future.

Be realistic

While you should be ambitious, you should also be practical. Don’t be too visionary.

Your goals should be realistic for your business. If you’re a baker, you shouldn’t set a goal to build a spaceship. That’s an unattainable goal.

Your goals should be practical, with an end in sight. At some point you should be able to reasonably meet the goals in your vision statement.

Be specific

The goals in your vision statement should be specific to your business. They should be things that only your business can provide. This is your unique selling point.

Don’t write a generic vision statement that can apply to any business. Get specific so the vision statement fits only your business.

Make it simple

Your visions statement should be simple. People inside and outside of your business should be able to understand it.

Don’t use jargon in the statement. An average person shouldn’t have to look up words or reread the statement multiple times to comprehend what you are saying.

Vision statement template

The vision statement you write should be unique to your business. Despite this, most businesses can use a similar format to create a vision statement.

Vision statements typically contain the following information:

  • A time frame
  • Your company’s name
  • What you will accomplish
  • How you will have accomplished it

Vision statement examples

Here are a couple of vision statements that fit the template and previous tips.

  1. By 2025, Rebecca’s Floral Design will sell locally sourced flowers by working only with local growers and promoting the partnerships to customers.
  2. Ramos’ Sweet Treats will have a chain of bakeries that serves the greater metropolitan area with unique, made-from-scratch desserts.