Reflection Letters


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Provocation of the month:

“Why are there so few leaders in organizations and nations that have an Outside-in, Five Aspects vision? Most visions I see are Inside-out.”

What is an Outside-in vision?
An Outside-in vision is our answer to the question: “How do we want things to be in our world?” An Outside-in vision comes out of an understanding that we are all One and that we as leaders have to take people, planet and profit into account when we lead the development of our organization or nation. Leaders with a true Outside-in vision have come to realize that we are all interdependent in the long run. If we take more than we give or if we give more than we take we will one day have to give back or take back. Coming generations will have to or will do it if we do not do it.

What is the difference between our vision and our purpose?
Our purpose is our contribution to our vision. It is our Inside-out response to our vision. We explain and commit ourselves to a serious contribution to our vision. At the same time we realize that many more people, organizations, and nations need to participate with their purpose or contribution if we are to fulfill our vision.

What is a Five Aspects vision?
When we connect to our vision it has a positive effect on our body, our emotions, our mind, our soul and our spirit. We feel connected and love dominates over fears. Co-creation dominates over competition. We are humble when we see the positive things previous generations have created for us and we want to be proud of what we have contributed when we talk to our grandchildren. We are global, regional and local at the same time and we understand that we have to take all these levels into account when we wake up in the morning for a new day as leaders, wherever we are. A Five Aspects vision fills us with energy, motivation, meaning and joy.

What keeps us away from Outside-in, Five Aspects visions?
Survival of the fittest!? Yes, probably, but that is just based on a theory. The fight between love and fear!? Yes, probably, but getting stuck in our ego trap due to fears will not lead to long term success. How appreciated and happy are the board members and managers of the corrupt organizations that we all have heard about during the recent past. I think most of them regret that they did not have an Outside-in, Five Aspects vision when they were leading their organizations. How will they explain to the younger generation why they did what they did? We all have a responsibility for ourselves, other people and coming generations. How willing are we to take this responsibility as leaders? Do we have the courage to stand by our vision when we are being challenged?



One example of an Outside-in, Five Aspects vision is expressed by the new Secretary General of OECD, Angel Gurria from Mexico: “The economies in our world are functioning better together in the light of the globalization.”, and the purpose: “OECD will be the economic secretariat of the globalization and extend the dialogue to many more nations in order to contribute to our vision” (Free translation by Hans Akerblom)