A Case for learning Envisioning Skills
If vision is as important to the success of leaders and their organizations as many leadership experts suggest, effective methods for teaching visioning and determining antecedents of visioning skill are critical future issues.
Recent research suggests that visioning is a skill that can be learned, but the researchers disagree on the best learning model. Management consultant and author, Burt Nanus describes a systematic approach that requires an assessment of barriers before the visioning takes place. This method is ideal for some who need a directed study and can approach visioning with a preconceived notion of what type of vision is realistic.
Some "off-the-shelf" vision programs emphasize the importance comparative discussion on the difference between visionaries and leaders. Others assume the act of "vision creating" is a process -- not for just organizations and individuals, but for creating art, relationships, and careers.
Nearly all management scholars who conducted surveys and tests on vision skills and practices from 1994 to present day agree on its importance for effective leadership. Although they argue over methodology and training paradigms, they agree that "envisioning" is more than simple time or task management. While vision itself is a hypothetical cognitive thought process that, at minimum, clarifies strategic opportunities, envisioning skill can help individuals pull together beliefs, self images, and resources that can enhance personal as well as organizational long-term goal setting.
Envisioning skill also comprises more than reading or attending seminars. All research and testimonial indicate that commitment to vigilant practice is the best pathway to making envisioning skill a powerful tool. When put to work in the real world, envisionment processes are perpetually adjusting and perfecting; so to is the act of acquiring and sharpening its skill.