Today is the day that John Fitzgerald Kennedy was born way back in 1917! One would be forgiven to think that the man was born later on in the 50’s. JFK never aged and never will he. In our hearts, he will always be remembered as the charismatic aristocrat, with tremendous wit and elegant eloquence.
However, without his father (the powerful weapon), probably we would not be reading about him. Probably we would not be having the Kennedy space center. Probably Neil Armstrong might not have stepped on the moon. He gave leadership unprecedented at his time.
JFK’s Father deliberately pushed his boys towards politics, pulling every stop to align them. Some earlier references to JFK’s political career depict him as someone who was not cut out for it. But JFK’s father did not relent. He kept pushing. Now, I am not advocating that kind of fatherhood where you push your child in order to fulfill your selfish ambition. I am however simply picking up one aspect of father hood that every child craves for: Mentoring.
For me, the greatest aspect I will ever remember JFK will always be for his vision. If you googled JFK’s “Moon Speech”, you will be astounded at how eloquent, clear, passionate and visionary that speech was. I rank it high up there with the “I have a dream”, if not higher! Notice that both of these speeches spoke of some passionate future vision.
I decided to find that speech and put it here for you. [gm album=3]
It is amazing! Can you compare this 1960 speech with those we hear our “leaders” deliver to us these days? Something is wrong somewhere! The man dreamt of the moon and galvanized a whole nation (if not the entire world) to do an impossibility. When Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon for the very first time in History, the seed had been sown 10 years earlier by JFK.
What can we learn about being people of vision from this? The power of a father is astounding. JFK’s father gave the man a vision for politics. JFK have America a vision for dominating space. The power of a vision is extrically linked to the power of a Father. A father is not just a Provisionary, he also is a visionary.
And that is why we still remember JFK, MLK, Mandela, Joseph as well as Jesus Christ. They all have a legacy that they left behind. One thing about legacy is that you don’t go out there to build it…you just follow a passionate vision that is beyond you and the rest is history. A great vision cannot be borne alone. Neither can it be borne completely in your lifetime. It goes way beyond that.
“My people perish for lack of vision”
Where there is no vision, the people cast of restraint. In other words, people are scattered and engaged in activities that do not show any kind of progress. If you wanted to get focus, you need to find an object for it, and for the most part, that object has to be a compelling vision. In fact we have said that if you wanted to destabilize a visionary, all you need to do is break their focus.
[ictt-tweet-inline]Mark my words: Nobody every became productive without having a vision.[/ictt-tweet-inline] In fact more than 60% of productivity is accounted by vision. Vision dictates the what and the why, which of course dictate the how. The most productive employee in your organization is that one who has a vision. Mark such a one. Do not be fooled by the flurry of activities of others. Look at those whose bedrock of action is having a vision.
I love this one. The man with a vision will have two things happen to them immediately: Those who care about the vision will gather around you, and you might just be their leader.
If you wanted a great team around you, do not look at competence first, however, look at how connected they are to the vision first!
Great visionaries do not just think about feeding their kids and taking their wives for an outing. They do not just think about buying the latest car and curtains. They think big, they think global and they think humanity. Having a vision is one of the ways you can use to serve humanity. It goes without saying.
[ictt-tweet-inline]Having a great why of doing something helps put failure in perspective[/ictt-tweet-inline]. This means that your propensity to give up is lessened where your vision is clear and passionate. That is why there is a difference between an employee and a business owner. There is also a difference between a son or a daughter in a family and a servant in the same family. [ictt-tweet-inline]If you wanted to insulate yourself against setbacks, you won’t find a remedy. [/ictt-tweet-inline]It is an exercise in futility. However, [ictt-tweet-inline]if you have a vision before you get started, you have multiplied by great strides your ability to bounce back [/ictt-tweet-inline]again and again when you hit a wall. Why is that so? Because the why of doing what you are doing is much greater than the why of not doing it. The cost is negligible as compared to the benefit that you see accruing.
So as we remember this great visionary, let us today think vision. Let us not think big, but let us think vision.