Chapter 04 - Community Vision- What It Is, Why You Need It

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Without a common vision there is no basis for making good group decisions.

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Creating a Life Together:

Creating a Life Together Chapter Four

Community Vision::

Community Vision: What It Is, Why You Need It 1. Sound a Clear Note 2. Elements of a Community’s Vision 3. Your Vision Documents & Statements 4. Do it First

1. Vision: Sound a Clear Note:

1. Vision: Sound a Clear Note Describes the shared future you want to create Reveals & announces your group’s core values Expresses something each of you can identify with Helps unify your effort Keeps your group inspired

Sound a Clear Note (cont.):

Sound a Clear Note (cont.) Gives you a reference point to return to during confusion or disagreement Draws out the commitment of the people in your group Is an insurance policy against what you don’t want to happen

2. Elements of a Community’s Vision:

2. Elements of a Community’s Vision Vision Mission (or Purpose) Values Interests Goals (or Objectives) Aspirations Strategy

Elements: Vision:

Elements: Vision Shared image of what is possible Shared future to create The thing that motivates you to create a community The “who”, “what”, and “why” of your endeavor Described in present tense, as if happening now

Elements: Mission or Purpose:

Elements: Mission or Purpose Expresses your vision in physical terms What you’ll be physically doing & experiencing as you manifest your shared image of what’s possible Example of vision: “A world where everyone has adequate, healthy shelter.” Example of mission: “To build a model village” etc.

Elements: Values:

Elements: Values Important and enduring beliefs or ideals shared by the members of a culture about what is good or desirable and what is not Expressed by how you behave now, and how you intend to behave daily in community Vision arises out of shared values (& characteristics & processes) that you deem worthy

Elements: Interests:

Elements: Interests Interest: a state of attention, concern, curiosity; wanting to know or learn about something or someone Manifest as experiences, states of being, or physical things relative to your future community Interests usually arise from values and can be expressed as goals Example: Value sustainability -> interested in composting -> goal is community composting

Elements: Goals and Objectives:

Elements: Goals and Objectives The purposes toward which endeavors are directed Short-term milestones you commit to achieving Generally a few months or a year long Goals are measurable; you know when they are achieved SMART Goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely

Elements: Aspirations:

Elements: Aspirations A hope or ambition of achieving something Strong desires or ambitions for inspired, elevated goals, arising from values Aspirations should help connect your goals to your vision Aspirations help develop vision

Elements: Strategy:

Elements: Strategy Affirms a series of goals within a particular time frame Strategy is the “how, where, when” while vision is the “who, what, why” Budgets, cash projections, timelines, many details Altering strategy only changes how you are creating your future; not the future itself

Example of Vision & Mission:

Example of Vision & Mission Vision: “A world that values the diversity of all life and provides for its sustainability by living in harmony with nature and spirit. Mission: “To create a community in which we work to expand our consciousness by living the question: how does one live sustainably with nature and spirit?”

Outline of the Process:

Outline of the Process Find common values, interests, & aspirations Develop a common vision Condense vision into a Vision Statement(s) Develop mission and mission documents Establish goals and objectives, and strategies for achieving them

3. Your Vision Documents & Statements:

3. Your Vision Documents & Statements May have formal vision documents that describe the shared future you hope for May be various documents that give a sense of the vision, including a vision statement, or not May be either internal or legal documents May be in promotional literature

Vision versus Vision Statements:

Vision versus Vision Statements Community vision is not the same thing as the community’s vision statement Vision statement is the vision condensed and articulated in a few sentences Like a notice: this is what we are, this is what we hope to accomplish, this is what guides us

A Well-Crafted Statement:

A Well-Crafted Statement Offers a clear, concise, compelling expression of your group’s vision and mission Is short; ideally 20-40 words Embodies the same quality of energy as your vision Helps focus your group’s energy like a lens

A Well-Crafted Statement:

A Well-Crafted Statement Offers a short-handed reminder of why you’re forming community Helps awaken your vision as an energetic presence Is easily memorized, and ideally each of you can recite it

A Well-Crafted Statement:

A Well-Crafted Statement Communicates your group’s core purpose to others quickly: This is what we’re about Allows your group to be specific about what it is and what it is not Is what potential members want to see first

Along with Vision, the Statement::

Along with Vision, the Statement: Is something every member can identify with Helps unify your effort Keeps your group inspired Reveals and announces your core values Gives you a reference point to return to during confusion or disagreement

A Clear Correlation:

A Clear Correlation Between clear, specific, and grounded vision statements, and communities that actually get built Between flowery, vague, or downright pretentious vision statements, and communities that never get off the ground

4. Do it First:

4. Do it First Identify and articulate your vision first, before buying property together Ambiguous or ill-defined vision results in structural conflict Vision and the Vision Statement must be very clear to avoid any misunderstanding

Creating a Life Together:

Creating a Life Together Discussion

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