At Project Brilliant, we started the new year with a two-day workshop where we reflected on 2019 and discussed what was coming in 2020. We wanted to gain alignment toward our desired outcomes; both individually and as a company. To do this, we decided to use V2MOM.

If you’re not familiar with V2MOM, it stands for Vision, Values, Methods, Obstacles and Measures. It was created by Mark Benioff of as a way to outline the company’s goals and how those goals would be achieved.

“V2MOM gave us a detailed map of where we were going as well as a compass to direct us there.”

Note: All quotes in this blog are from Mark Benioff’s book “Behind the Cloud”, excerpted in this article.


Vision: What Do You Want?

“The vision helped us define what we wanted to do.”

This isn’t a traditional vision statement. I would compare it to the goal or goals you’re trying to achieve. 


Values: What’s Important About it?

“The values established what was most important about that vision; it set the principles and beliefs that guided it (in priority).”

Again, not your typical values, but rather the important characteristics of the goal.


Methods: How Do You Get It?

“The methods illustrated how we would get the job done by outlining the actions and the steps that everyone needed to take.”

What will you do to achieve your vision (aka goals)? If the vision were a Product Backlog item, these might be the tasks.


Obstacles: What Might Stand in the Way?

“The obstacles identified the challenges, problems, and issues we would have to overcome to achieve our vision.”

What are the (potential) impediments blocking you from achieving the goal? Lack of time? Lack of information? Unclear priorities? 


Measures: How Will You Know When You Have It?

“The measures specified the actual result we aimed to achieve; often this was defined as a numerical outcome.”

SMART goals could be helpful to provide a shared understanding of how to measure success. (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-based).

To kick-off the session, the CEO – Aaron Kopel – presented the V2MOM for Project Brilliant. During previous Project Brilliant Friday collaboration sessions, we had walked through and discussed the V2MOM framework, so we were all familiar with it. As Aaron presented the Project Brilliant V2MOM, we asked questions and gave feedback.

There were items we weren’t clear on, such as the vision. We talked about whether there were too many methods and measures since our V2MOMs were only for the first six months of 2020. Also, we weren’t quite sure if the methods and measures were in priority order. Aaron accepted the feedback, we explored some ideas, gathered more insights and updated the V2MOM as a team.

The V2MOM still needed refining, but we had been working on it for a while and thought that stepping back and switching gears might help clear our minds. Fortunately, we had also planned to do another exercise where we answered the six critical questions from Patrick Lencioni’s book “The Advantage.” We thought that the questions might give us some new ideas and input to incorporate back into the V2MOM.

6 Questions From “The Advantage” by Patrick Lencioni

  • Why do we exist?
  • How do we behave?
  • What do we do?
  • How will we succeed?
  • What is most important, right now?
  • Who must do what?

To end the first day, we discussed these questions, which generated fresh insights for us to ponder until the morning.

We came back the next day and dove right into the V2MOM. With our new insights from the Lencioni questions, we updated the Project Brilliant V2MOM to make it more focused and concise. We also prioritized the items under each category to add clarity.

Now, it was time for each of us to create our own V2MOM. We put 30 minutes on the timer, some soothing Antonio Vivaldi on the speaker and started filling out the V2MOM template. We all kept in mind that our individual V2MOM should tie back into the Project Brilliant V2MOM. For example, our individual vision should not be identical to the Project Brilliant vision but should contribute toward achieving it.

We found that 30 minutes was not enough, but after 45 minutes, we each had our V2MOM in a place that was ready for feedback. Each person walked through their V2MOM and we learned about their goals, such as developing new markets, hiring, launching a book club and increasing community involvement. Feedback was accepted as a gift, questions were answered and updates were made. By the end of the session, each V2MOM was stronger and more focused. We had a more clear understanding of what we wanted to accomplish, how we would do it, what stood in our way and how we’d know when we had succeeded.

It will be interesting to see how the V2MOM helps each of us, and the organization, focus. We plan to check-in and support one another toward the goals we have set, and we hope that the V2MOM will help 2020 be the best year yet.

How do you set goals for yourself and at your organization? Have you used the V2MOM?