Mr. Obama and Mr. Boehner need a vision. I'm sure they both have ideas about where they want to lead, but there is no joint vision. Any organization, whether it is a small shop with three staff members, or a country of 300 million, must be vision-driven if it is to succeed. If we don't ask ourselves the question: "What do we want to come of this?" and answer that question, we are nowhere. Is it possible that a large, diverse group of people could agree on a vision? I believe it is.

Currently we are driven by fear rather than by a vision. Partisan agendas and the fear of not being re-elected drive most everyone's behaviors. Being fear driven is like playing not to lose. Energy and effort, rather than being employed toward positive outcomes, are focused on destroying opponents and protecting one's own backside.

Organizational and quality guru, W. Edwards Deming wrote: "Drive out fear, so that everyone may work effectively for the organization." This was one of his famous Fourteen Points for a quality organization. He said that fear impairs performance and causes people to lie about the numbers. Political leaders are constantly reframing facts to make themselves look good and their opponents look bad. It seems that they seldom speak from the heart but must stay "on message" in order to avoid attacks from opponents and negative press.

Being vision driven is playing with the intent to win and/or succeed. The vision becomes a point of reference and a driving force in the speech and behavior of all of the members of the organization. For example, if the vision for the United States were to be: "Freedom, prosperity, and safety for all. Be a shining light to the rest of the world." Or how about these words: "… form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity,…" The last phrase was extracted from the U. S. Constitution.

These words would guide both the House and the Senate in every vote. They would guide the President in terms of what gets proposed and what is signed or vetoed. They would guide the Supreme Court in making judicial decisions.

Currently the leaders in Washington D.C. seem like lost children. Since almost every word spoken is either for political survival or the destruction of opponents, nothing that is said is credible. No one in Washington D.C. has been willing to step up and and take ownership of any of the issues of the day. Unless there is accountability, nothing will be accomplished. Unless there is a set of vision, values, and goals, there is nothing to be held accountable to.

It is up to us, as members of this very large organization, to step up and hold ourselves and our leaders accountable. This means more than simply criticizing the party you don't like. It means holding the people you did vote for accountable. It means learning to focus on what we do want rather than putting all of our energy into what we don't want via blaming, complaining, and gossip.

I would like to see a gathering of all three branches of the government where a vision could be written. I would be happy to facilitate! Next there would need to be a set of values (How we operate) that would include honesty and a commitment to partnering with each other for the highest good of this country. Next there should be a list of priorities listed as goals, with teams of leaders made accountable for each goal. The goals would need to be non-partisan such as:
1. Creating full employment.
2. Creating a zero deficit budget.
3. Reducing the debt.
4. Building strong partnerships with other nations.
5. Reforming the political system so that we can vote for people based on their ability and the direction they espouse.

Goals should be owned and action plans should be written and completed on time. If a company performed like the U.S. government it would out of business in no time. I think we'll be out of business as a nation unless we make some changes along the lines I have suggested. I do not mean this as a fear message, but as a possibilities message. We can certainly limp along as we are and survive for awhile. The underlying vision for the USA has always been about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for everyone. We need to be examples for our leaders and take time out from the criticism and blaming and ask ourselves:

1. Does my behavior match with my vision and values?
2. Does my speech align with my deepest desires and with who I am?
3. Am I guided by my Higher Self (Higher Power) rather than by my ego?
4. Can I accept those who look different, think differently than me, and believe differently?
5. Can I also work with them?

If you can answer YES to those five questions then there is hope for this nation. If you can expect political leaders to answer YES, and support them only if they do, then yes, we can succeed.

Author's Bio: 

William Frank Diedrich is a Speaker, Executive Coach and the Author of Adults at Work.. Learn more about his work at . Contact him at .