Summary of Making Vision Stick by Andy Stanley

“One of the greatest challenges of leadership is making vision stick. Vision doesn’t have much adhesive” (12).

In this book, Andy Stanley gives 5 tips on how to make your vision stick in people’s minds:

1. State the vision simply

For a vision to stick, it must be memorable. This demands simplicity, clarity, and conciseness.

“People don’t remember or embrace paragraphs. They remember and embrace sentences” (19).

“It is better to have a vision statement that is incomplete and memorable than to have one that is complete and forgettable” (21).

2. Cast the vision convincingly

For a vision to stick, it must: (1) Define the problem; (2) Offer a solution; (3) Present a reason. Every vision is a compelling solution to a real problem that calls people to action.

“Buy-in from others hinges on your ability to convince them that you are offering a solution to a problem they are convinced needs to be solved” (26).

3. Repeat the vision regularly

For a vision to stick, it must be repeated on a consistent & systematic basis. Use as many different venues to communicate the vision.

“Casting a convincing vision once is not enough to make it stick. Twice isn’t enough either. Vision needs to be repeated regularly. To make it stick, you need to find ways to build vision casting into the rhythm of your organization. This is not difficult to do. But it is one of those things that won’t happen without a leader intentionally taking action” (33-4).

4. Celebrate the vision systematically

For a vision to stick, it must be acknowledged by the leader through celebration. Whenever progress is made in achieving the vision, celebrate it! This should be systematic & built into the rhythm of meetings throughout the year.

“To make a vision stick, a leader needs to pause long enough to celebrate the wins along the way. Celebrating the wins does more to clarify the vision than anything else” (39).

5. Embrace the vision personally

For a vision to stick, it must be lived out by the leaders in a way that people can see it.

“If you say you believe in something, live it out. And live it in a way that the people around you can see it. That’s not arrogant. It’s liberating. It frees others to join without reservation and without suspicion” (49).

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