Vision + EOS

Vision and the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS)

This article is part of a series on Traction and the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS). EOS is a set of tools that enables a business leader to grow a company while maintaining sanity. Today’s EOS component: Vision.

Most entrepreneurs can see their vision clearly. Problems arise if they assume that everyone else in the organization can see it, too. But humans are not mind-readers. We can only see the vision of another person if that vision is communicated clearly and with intention. EOS solves the vision problem with the Vision/Traction Organizer (V/TO). Let’s explore.

Decide on the Vision

EOS suggests that business leaders can clarify their vision by answering eight questions:

  1. What are your core values?

  2. What is your core focus?

  3. What is your ten-year target?

  4. What is your marketing strategy?

  5. What is your three-year picture?

  6. What is your one-year plan?

  7. What are your quarterly Rocks?

  8. What are your issues?

The book contains exhaustive procedures for wrestling with the above questions, along with frameworks for thinking about the answers.

For example, Rocks are the key initiatives that the company must complete quarterly in order to achieve annual business goals. Every short-term activity, no matter how small, is connected to a long-term goal. Every member of the organization knows how their work fits into the bigger picture. The result: All members of the team start rowing in the same direction. And the organization becomes unstoppable.

One Example: Core Values

As defined in the book Traction, core values are a small set of vital and timeless guiding principles for a company. Here are the core values of Bridgetown Partners:

Great companies can differ in their values. The key is to have consistent values that are good for the long-term health of the company, its clients, and the community.

Communicate the Vision

The number one reason employees don’t share a company vision is that they don’t know what it is. The only way to determine if your vision is shared by all is to tell them.

~From the book Traction

After the leadership team has defined its vision (guided by the eight questions), it’s time to communicate the vision throughout the organization. Simpler is better. That’s why the V/TO is only two pages long. You can download your copy of the V/TO at

Next in the Series: People

Next EOS topic: People. We’ll review ideas from EOS on how to choose the right people, and how to create an environment where every member of the team can thrive while helping the organization to grow.