Robbie Maltby

March 27, 2021

The importance of Vision

A lot of the time we presume to know what other people are thinking, or trying to say.

This is especially true with people we're close to because we've already got a picture of their vision (or motives) in our minds.

We think we know them well enough not to listen as closely, and we often listen out for what we would like to hear vs. what they actually mean.

It's a common aspect of our social experience, and one that causes many an argument, so it's worth being aware of and remembering to clarify before adding our 2 cents.

While this matters in our personal lives, those situations are 'usually' fairly low risk.

It's a completely different story in a work environment.

To succeed (or sometimes just to survive) companies need to make plans for their future, including activities for all their staff.

To produce products and services people actually pay for is extremely hard. There are so many moving parts that even small amounts of ambiguity can take businesses off track, and hamper their ability to execute.


I recently completed a contract for myLevels, a company helping people identify what foods their body uniquely needs to be healthy.

It was early stages and we were still building the website, with not much copy written at that point.

I was still understanding the brand and what it offered, and of course had my own view on what it could be (😇).

During one planning meeting, I suggested adding an option for customers to work with a professional nutritionist or dietitian who could analyse their results and provide 'human' feedback.

I'd researched the market and all the competitors were doing it, so I expected everyone to be in agreement.

I realised fairly quickly this was not a desired option, and their response made complete sense.

Their vision was "To be an AI Nutritionist in your pocket." and to help their customers make decisions with data, without the need for human intervention.

This changed everything. All the ideas I had about creating a 1-2-1 coaching service, webinars, interviews etc. were clarified. This was not the vision, at least for now, but nevertheless something I could get behind.

Over the course of the contract, the question of human intervention came up regularly with technology partners and investors, and the same vision was shared. End of discussion.

So remember to ask, remember to clarify. Remember to listen out for the vision.

"We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak." Epictetus 

About Robbie Maltby

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