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“If Benjamin Franklin had picked someone to teach the lessons in self-mastery that he used in his life, he would have picked Bob Burg.”

~ Vic Johnson, Founder AsAManThinketh.net

Communicating the Vision

August 26th, 2017 by Bob Burg

Speaking with a client about an ongoing issue with his sales team, I brought up a particular concept. When he heard it, he loved it. He saw exactly how it applied to his situation. He also expressed amazement that he had never heard this before.

Except, he had. He’d heard about it numerous times. I know this for a fact since I’m the one from whom he’d heard it numerous times.

Now, lest you think my point is to boast about my great idea, the idea was hardly mine. In fact, the idea is so old there’s no one to even credit for it.

My point is that people can hear an idea but not actually grasp it because they’re not ready to. But, if we don’t continue to repeat it (not obnoxiously, of course, but appropriately, as part of an ongoing message) then even when they are ready they still won’t hear it, because we’ve stopped saying it.

Same for Teams and Organizations

As leaders, as teachers, as influencers, we can—we must—cast a vision. That’s the easy part. Then not only must we hold that vision but continue to communicate it.


Eventually, when they do get it, and ask you why you never told them that before, rather than calling them a dummy or yelling at them for not listening, simply smile and give them credit for grabbing on to it.

The same goes for when you’ve been telling them something forever and then they suddenly hear it from a third-party, and then report back to you with the brilliant piece of advice they just heard. Simply smile and give them credit for being open to new ideas.

Because a true leader doesn’t care who gets the credit. They just want the ideas to be received and their people to benefit.

And, the more you put the right message in front of them—whether directly from you or from a third-party authority—repetition is critical to effective leadership and influence.

4 Responses to “Communicating the Vision”
  1. Gary Campbell said at 10:12 am on

    Great post Bob! Leaders must be able to convey vision and continue to communicate throughout the term. Not only for others but themselves. You are right, I have worked with people who may hear the message from one source but it takes a third party, usually in the form of a consultant, to have it resonate. Thankfully as you say, it doesn’t matter how they get it but that they get it. Humility is a wonderful thing for those of us who kindly smile and whisper that prayer of thanks that it was received.

    All the best my friend!


  2. Bob Burg said at 10:39 am on

    Gary, thank you for your kind and thoughtful feedback! And, thank you for your always wise insights. As the award-winning leader and CEO that you are, you are the epitome of the very idea you sited. Keep leading the field, my Brother!

  3. Tumane Mokhomo said at 10:31 am on

    I think this is like when I first read “The Go-Giver”. The concept of giving was not new to me; neither was the often emphasised reverse effect ( that when you give selflessly, you get). Yet I was, and still remain baffled by its simplicity and practicality. I suppose, and please correct me if I’m wrong, that how the concept is presented to a person is imperative to how hard the message “hits home”. It is quite something to contemplate. Thank you for the wisdom.

  4. Bob Burg said at 1:38 pm on

    Thank YOU, Tumane. I appreciate your kind words!

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