A great example of sharing a common vision can be found in the story of one of my favourite inspirational leaders, Christopher Wren.
In the 17th Century, Wren was commissioned to build St Paul’s cathedral. He was determined to construct something that would stand for centuries to come.
Taking a walk around the building site, Wren stopped to ask a workman what he was doing. The workman simply answered, ‘cutting a piece of stone.’ Moving on, slightly dissatisfied, Wren stopped by another workman and enquired again; he bluntly replied, ‘earning five shillings and twopence a day.’ Even more frustrated, Wren walked on.
Finding a third workman, Wren asked again. The third workman announced, ‘I am helping Christopher Wren build a beautiful cathedral.’ Satisfied at last, Wren happily thanked the man.
The third workman understood the greater vision, unlike his colleagues. He was aligned to Wren’s core commitments, understanding his task was more important than simply spreading mortar.
Can your employees articulate your company vision? Are they ‘cathedral builders’ or just working for a wage? If the latter, how can you inspire them more with your vision?