By Dickson Igwe, Contributor
Vision is critical to economics. The math, statistics, psychology, history, and sociology, that create the concepts and narratives of economic thought, are mere tools of the visionary. Vision is what economics is about. Vision makes economics a useful and desirable discipline.
OK. The adoption of a national vision is the greatest tool of security and prosperity a country can possess. Post Hurricanes Irma and Maria, vision and visionary leadership alone, will take the Virgin Islands to proverbial El Dorado.
The Disaster Recovery Agency must be part of a long-term vision and strategic plan for the Virgin Islands, to ensure, effective, short, and medium to long-term, economic recovery.
Now, all things begin with a vision. For Christians, God had a vision of a world where like-minded beings, with God’s nature, existed in paradisiacal perpetuity. Sadly, Adam and Eve spoiled the show.
And, the greatest inventions ever hatched in the hearts and minds of men, began with a vision of a better world for mankind, through thinking, discovery, experimentation, invention, and innovation.
If necessity is the mother of invention, the vision, is the crucible that holds the idea behind every invention.
The simple bicycle, the combustion engine, bullet train networks, the global airline and shipping ecosystems, scientific and medical discovery, social and political systems, the arts and architecture, dizzying engineering feats, modern academia, the ubiquitous internet, all of the preceding began with a single individual with a vision of tomorrow.
John D Rockefeller possessed a vision of an oil conglomerate that would rule global energy. Carnegie and Vanderbilt possessed visions of rail and financial networks that linked the American frontier with the eastern coast, knitting North America into one United States.
Walt Disney had a vision of a world of fantasy that would generate billions of dollars in revenue. These visionaries and their families were rewarded with vast wealth that remains potent to this day.
Bill Gates and Steve Jobs began with visions of software and hardware networks. Two nerdy types: playing with devices in their parent’s garages that led to Microsoft and Apple, and unimaginable wealth.
Larry Page, Mark Zuckerberg, and Jeff Bezos, have continued a North American legacy, of visionary innovation, that have placed Google, Facebook, and Amazon, at the epicentre of global digital technology, and a multi-trillion dollar internet industry driven by innovation and sourced mainly in tiny offices and labs in Silicon Valley. Today, Google is bigger than Boeing.
For better or for worse, the USA remains the centre for creativity, innovation, and visionary ideas.
Lavity Stoutt BVI’s greatest leader
Hamilton Lavity Stoutt, the greatest leader produced from these Virgin Islands was a visionary leader whose vision for these Virgin Islands brought an archipelago of tiny rural hamlets into the 21 century. His mantra: ‘without vision, the people perish’.
The Virgin Islands’ most famous citizen is Sir Richard Branson. Branson possessed a vision when he was a schoolboy in England of becoming a big music promoter. Branson achieved his dream. The dream led to Virgin Atlantic and a space-age business. Today, Branson is one of the world’s wealthiest men.
There is no effective planning without vision. Where a family, business, or country, wants to be, must be guided by vision. Vision is the light at the end of the tunnel. Vision is the ultimate destination. Vision is the dream.
The most powerful organisations on earth all began with a simple dream: a vision of the founder. Vision alone creates the mission and planning that turns dreams into reality.
‘Building bigger and better’ not a vision
Effective economic policy starts with a vision of where a country wants to end up. With a corporate vision, every employee of a business knows exactly where he or she should be and what he or she is expected to do, at each point in time.
So to a country: a country that possesses a national vision enables every citizen to participate in effective nation-building, from the young school child to the elderly matriarch. Vision is the framework for national success.
How can the Virgin Islands even begin to recover and rise to a better place if the country has no idea of where it wants to end up? Build bigger and better is not vision: it is just mantra.
Effective managers state that a vision must be SMART: specific, measured, achievable, realistic, and time-related. In the proceeding story, this writer will present his own strategic vision for the Virgin Islands over the next 20 years.
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