Lumen Impact Group
Lumen Impact Group

Vision Stories: A Practical (And Surprisingly Simple!) Tool To Successfully Initiate Change

Published: April 26, 2024

When you’re looking to make a shift, start something new, or refresh something that maybe isn’t working as you’d expected, how do you make sure that the change you’re implementing is actually going to help you reach your desired goal? 

At Lumen Impact Group, we have found that building a common understanding of success is key to successfully initiating change, and we are big believers in using Vision Stories to build this understanding. 

Whether you’re talking about something as big as a new nation-wide initiative or something as small as running your weekly staff meetings, starting by writing out your vision for success and getting understanding and buy-in from those involved with that activity will help make it a reality.

How to Write a Vision Story

When writing Vision Stories, put yourself out in the timeline — whether it is three weeks, three months, or three years. If all is going well, and you’re on track, what will this look like? What will you be proud of? What kinds of things will be happening? What will be the impact? How will people be involved? 

Write those things down and craft them into a story that shows, not just tells, the expectations for success. Your Vision Story doesn’t need to be more than a paragraph, but it does need to be aspirational, strategically sound, and actually written down, so that you and your team can come back to it when it feels like you’re off track, or to gauge how it’s going throughout the process.

What Does a Vision Story Look Like? 

You want to implement a new meeting format for your team. Before you begin to initiate that change, you might write a Vision Story that sounds a little like this: 

“It’s three months from now, and ever since we implemented our new meeting format, team meetings have been a time that everyone looks forward to. Each person on our team shows up on time and excited to share their good news, and they’re ready with updates top of mind for projects they’re a part of. Some of us even keep an updates sticky note to be prepared, and everyone follows along using our running agenda as notes are taken. We regularly talk about how we all value that our time lets us connect and have fun but is also efficient and relevant because individual teams don’t monopolize everyone’s time with details unrelated to the work of the whole group. Even when some of us aren’t involved on a particular project, the updates from those who are give us insight into capacity and into the work that we do as a whole. This has supported us all in having better insight into who we are, what we do as an organization, and we hold it as a priority. It’s so nice to be able to say that our team meetings are not just another thing we have to go to in the week, but really an impactful time for us all.”

Now, when it feels like you’re off track or wondering, “is this really working?”, your Vision Story can serve as a guide to whether the change is having the positive impact you hoped for. 

What’s coming up for you and your team? Consider leveraging this practice to help you kick it off! We’d love to hear about it!


"Lisa did a fantastic job with our entire strategic planning team. Her process was beyond organized. As a new administrator, I was able to lean on Lisa for her expertise and knowledge of strategic planning. She did everything from meeting organization and to facilitating subgroups, focus groups and staff culture surveys. Her work with the school board and administrative team was respectful, while also filled with appropriate advice and constructive feedback. I could not imagine going through this process without Lisa. She will continue to be a trusted resource for years to come."
Jamie DeWitt
School Leader, NexTech High School
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Terry Ryan
CEO, Bluum
"As a family-owned and operated company, we needed to preserve our culture and define our mission, vision and values better as we grew. Lumen Impact Group helped capture a variety of diverse perspectives and hopes for the future in a way that connected everyone involved. Lumen Impact Group helped us create a clear strategic focus and for our future stabilized our culture. Lisa also coached our leadership team in supporting implementation."
Mark Smith
President, Krapohl Ford & Lincoln
"Lisa Diaz and Lumen Impact provided invaluable support to Colorado Charter Facility Solutions during our start-up phase. I was the new non-profit organization’s executive director (and only employee at the time), and Lisa knew answers to questions that I did not even know to ask. She made sure the board of directors was set up correctly and that the organizational documents were in place. Lisa helped me establish the organization’s goals and ways to track progress. Lisa is organized, patient and kind, and worked quickly, thoroughly and collaboratively. She is a good listener and even acted as an executive coach/therapist at times. When necessary, Lisa can be direct, yet she is always focused on the goals of the organization and its success. I highly recommend Lisa Diaz and Lumen Impact Group. "
Jane Ellis
Executive Director, Colorado Charter Facility Solutions
"I have worked with Lumen Impact Group at both the individual and organizational level. As a coach, Lisa has a natural ability to get to the heart of the matter quickly and to ask questions that help her clients translate insight into action. Each team member who has worked with Lisa in a coaching capacity has demonstrated visible growth that has positively impacted individual and team performance. As an organization, we are trying to be purposeful about the culture we are creating, as a means of best fulfilling our mission. Lumen Impact Group has been a tremendous thought partner along the way and has facilitated critical steps in a collaborative yet efficient and fun way. Our team was in awe at how much we accomplished collectively in a short period of time. We are moving toward our ideal culture much more quickly than I thought possible, and I have no doubt it is because of Lumen Impact Group’s guidance. "
Kasey Miller
Chief of Staff, National Association of Charter School Authorizers