Last week I got an invitation to volunteer an entire day to do an “alignment workshop” with the Eagle Valley Alliance for Sustainability. On the surface, that offer was slightly less than compelling. Given my somewhat stressed schedule (so what else is new?), I was really tempted to just say, “Sorry”.
Because it was my friend Kim Langmaid (the new President of EVAS) asking, and because the Antlers has been the Official Hotel of EVAS and largely because Bob Vanourek was facilitating (who’s at the very top of my all-time business heroes list), I said yes. It turned out to be the best decision I’ve made in awhile.
Fifteen of the brightest people I know, led by a genius, in an incredibly valuable planning session. What’s more, it was actually fun. Bob’s alignment process addresses everything from Purpose, Vision, Values and Goals, to Strategy, Structure, Action Steps and Communication. Much of that is covered in his book Triple Crown Leadership, plus a whole lot more.
We spent the entire day on the initial “high-level” pieces. As a sidebar, when we were talking about the Purpose of the organization (what many call a “Mission Statement”) I was particularly struck by one of Bob’s slides. It reflected the stated purpose of the United States Humane Society … Celebrating Animals, Confronting Cruelty. Wow … how’s that for powerful? It made me think that every Mission Statement ought to be limited to four or five words.
At the end of the day, I admitted to feeling somewhat guilty that I had only spent half the time thinking about the future of EVAS, and the other half applying it all to the Antlers. I can’t wait to put it into practice. Happily, EVAS has already started to.