How One Visionary Leader Got Her Sparkle Back

Jen Coken
6 min readMar 6

Last month’s blog post covered situational leadership and its importance. I distinguished four types — visionary, coaching, delegating, and directing.

This month we’ll dive deep into visionary leadership.

Let me start by introducing you to my client Heidi.

Heidi has been with the same company for 35 years. She started by answering phones. Over time, she became the Chief Operating/HR officer. A couple of years ago, her boss had told her he was starting to plan for retirement and approached her. At that time, Heidi told him there was no way she wanted to take over.

Heidi came to my recent Master Your Mind Retreat because she wanted her sparkle back (her words, not mine). She said she felt stuck and didn’t know why. She was thinking about what she wanted after her own retirement but had a pit of fear in her stomach because she couldn’t see the future clearly.

Enter Day One of the Retreat.

On the first day, I always have my people invent their vision for the world. Not just business, not just you, but the world. The point is to have a vision that is bigger than whatever is happening between your ears. A vision that propels you out of bed each morning and becomes your north star for every interaction. Ultimately it is the legacy you want to leave behind.

Now, let’s pause here for a moment to distinguish between vision and mission.

There is a lot of debate about the difference between these two words.

Let me make it simple for you.

Your vision is how you want to see the world. Your mission is your slice of the pie.

My vision is a world of people at home with themselves. My mission (my slice of that pie) is to empower executive women in STEM to stop whittling away at themselves because they are trying to fit in. I want each and every woman to lead with confidence by honoring themselves and owning their visionary leadership.

Okay, back to our regularly scheduled programming…

What Heidi created with some brilliant coaching from yours truly (ahem) is that her vision for the world is simply a world filled with happy people. When Heidi got that vision, she…

Jen Coken

Executive Coach. Keynote Speaker/Trainer. Best Selling Author