Can you say it in one sentence is a great phrase to bear in mind when you’re trying to clarify vision and strategy.

Last night I was talking with a friend who wants to write a book. We were talking through the core idea he wants the book to get across, and although there was some good stuff there it was still quite vague. “Can you say the purpose of the book in one sentence?” I challenged him. He couldn’t then, but he will go away to reflect on it. And that clarity will make the eventual book much stronger.

But it occurred to me that there’s lots of other applications of that question when it comes to vision and strategy. So your new project that you’re excited about:

  1. Can you describe what it’s about in one sentence?
  2. Can you describe why that’s important in one sentence?
  3. Can you describe who the audience for it is in one sentence?
  4. Can you describe how or when you will know it’s succeeded in one sentence?
  5. What’s the ultimate change you want it to bring about in one sentence?

Some great questions. And perhaps you have many more that need answering for the vision you’re working towards. But whatever that vision is, you will gain much more clarity on it if you can answer these questions in one sentence.

Mark Williamson works as a director of One Rock. He’s an experienced leadership trainer, author of biographies on John Wesley and William Wilberforce, and is also passionate about praying for London. He enjoys good films, good food, and going for long walks with his wife Joanna. You can follow him on Twitter @markonerock.