Use this four-step method advocated by Robert Knowling, former head of high-speed Internet provider Covad Communications, to help your team build a vision of its success:
1. Have the team assess its role within the organization, and determine what it does uncommonly well and how it fits into the organization.
2. Invite the team to listen to Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Knowling’s group noted that the speech said nothing about the current state of affairs. Instead, it painted a picture of the future, tapping a deep aspiration.
3. Challenge the team to define its own aspirations.
4. Ask each team member to imagine that Fortune or Business Week is writing about the team five years from now and to describe how the team reached its goal. Knowling says the combination of thinking about where you want to be and then tactically about how you would get there helps crystallize a vision.