Thursday, December 15, 2011

Vision Statement

It seems in today's doggy-doggy world of high-level corporate intrigue and savage, hardline, competition, every company needs to stop everything that they are doing, hire dozens of ludicrously paid top-tier executives, and write a vision statement. A vision statement is some pithy paragraph that encapsulates and captures the raison d'etre (i.e. what are we here for again?) of the company. Today's CEO, COO, and CFO types somehow don't think that the peons toiling down in the mines can effectively get their jobs done without a very carefully prepared statement, orchestrated at the expense of millions of dollars and countless lives. Once prepared, this statement is added as an obscure link on the company's web page or stuck into a filing cabinet somewhere on the third floor.

I have been around several companies as they birthed such a statement. Unless you are a cretin, you should understand that every vision statement must contain the word "synergy". Also, for the statement preparation "team", the word "synergy" must be included at least 4.5 times in every Powerpoint presentation. ... What's that? ... You don't know what this word means? Well, to help you advance in the corporate word, to climb that ladder of success past the glass ceiling and into the attic, let me tell you. Synergy corresponds to a Utopian ideal espoused by various hippies and ne'er-do-wells. It involves a condition where everyone sits around in a big circle, munches granola, and sings cumbaya. Folks enjoined in this circle are required to sway back and forth in unison to the swelling background music.

So, even though it may seem that preparing such vision statements is a collossal waste of time and money, that it leads to a company top heavy with useless management types at the expense of overburdened workers who actually are responsible for making the companies highly profitable widgets but there is no money left to ease their burden or lower their quotas because more executives were just hired, it is not for you to question this rampant synergism. Just trust me when I tell you that it is critical for your company's long-term success metrics.