Meaning-Making in the Group

The first challenge of vision is to seek out the words that make up the story. We do not invent these words ourselves: we find them.

The goal of this exercise is to reveal the meaning that members of the group make themselves based on shared meaning and not individual factors. These moments are one of the sources of powerful versions of the story of vision, and we as leaders should incorporate these forms of meaning into our own telling of the story. When we know where to look for this meaning, we can seek out the moments when it is in front of us. This makes it easy for us to find the words to the story of vision, and then create a shared vision that provides identity and community to the group.


Think of a time when the members see their work in a positive way.


  • When do the members of the group talk with pride about their work?

  • What words do they use when they tell these stories?

  • What events or circumstances trigger them to feel this pride, and which events or circumstances do they feel able to share?

  • Are these understandings related to the customer or to other members of the group?

  • How do these individual tasks connect to the successes they describe in their stories?