Our blog this week is an excerpt from Chapter 8 of our Founder Director David Stannard’s first book “Paradise Rescued – From Cabbage Patch to Cabernet Franc”, where he explains the immense value that a clear Vision has had on the direction and development of Paradise Rescued.
“Our core strategy emerged very easily; the plan was there. I have often wondered what strategy other wine businesses use? Surely ours would simply be a copycat of everyone else’s? But then why doesn’t everyone make great wine? Or maybe I was just been fortunate enough to have done my business life training inside very professional and successful companies where such strategies, approaches and plans are the norm. If you don’t have a strategy and a plan, either as a business or personally, you won’t know where you are going. If you don’t know where you are going, then you will end up where you are headed! And it may not be that pleasant and it is unlikely to be what you want!….
……The important things were slowly coming together for the Vision. The more Sue (Gregory) and I discussed the project, the clearer our ideas became of what it should look like, what sort of market we wanted to target, what our winery might look like, what our tactical plan would be and most important of all what our values would be! We even designed the culture of the organisation we wanted to achieve before setting out. These initial, almost purist and philosophical, thoughts have been like guiding beacons for me personally and to Paradise Rescued as an organisation. The Vision (in English) hangs on the wall above my head here in the office in Melbourne. In Cardan the French version hangs on the wall of the lounge, which often doubles as the office since it looks down the driveway across to Hourcat Sud.
The Vision has become my point of reference. Whenever a challenge or significant question arises, I look at our Vision document and more often than not, the answer is there. Just writing this book and sharing what we may have learnt, falls under the value of Openness – our willingness to share what we have learnt – and by being open to other people, we will be able to learn from their much greater wisdom and knowledge. We can then build that into making better fruit, even finer wine and creating a stronger niche brand for our business.
I worked closely with Sue and drew pictures on table covers all over the place! It was a very exciting process to be able to open the windows to the future and let the light in on what Paradise Rescued could and would look like. Almost all of the concepts and pictures that we drew and captured on that Vision drawing have either started to happen or have already become part of the project.
Our Vision has set us up to be something different, both in the wine world and broader business community and we are proud of that. Our Vision has certainly had a huge impact on us and how we think. Getting the design pretty accurate and right up front has been a blessing. Of course, it is a living document – it must be. I usually like to have it dated for a review every 5 or so years as that provides a reasonable time period for serious change, achievement and asset creation. The electronic template that I had used to create the inaugural first picture had 2010 as the date in the title and despite a lot of thinking and creative effort in developing the rest of the page content, the date in the title had gone unnoticed. It was effectively out of date before it had been barely developed. Didn’t get that bit right… but it’s interesting to note that despite that funny error – which incidentally we didn’t spot until much later, the rest of the content has moved into place at a very fast pace. I guess we get what we focus on, right?
The Paradise Rescued Vision was born. That clear Vision picture was (and remains) a defining step in the history and development of our project. Our Vision has been our cheapest, but most priceless, document!”
What a powerful endorsement for having a clear coherent consistent Vision. The results of course speak for themselves. As Skip Ross reminds us “get a clear mental picture of what you want, fill it with emotion and move forward”. You must have a Vision.
Paradise Rescued is the 2016 International Business Award Silver Stevie winner for Small Budget Marketing Campaign.