Common Language Shapes Stronger More Vibrant Communities & Economies

In part two of the podcast with Kirk Thompson, we shift away from his personal development story to focus on development opportunities in his community. Kirk is imagining how a common framework and language like V-REEL™ might contribute to the formation of unified vision and re-development plans in St. Croix, US Virgin Islands in the aftermath of the major 2017 hurricanes, Irma and Maria. He shares how he is helping revitalize Saint Croix and restore economic health and vitality in ways it possibly hasn’t had in the past. Kirk sees not only the problems but also the solutions. He is currently looking for ways to effectively implement those solutions and answer some key the questions: What do people truly value? What does value mean to a group of people rather than just one person?

This is a huge challenge. Kirk is not only thinking about his personal value proposition and how that fits within his community, but he is also thinking of a value proposition for the territory in terms of how it might fit into the world economy. Always thinking strategically, Kirk was able to get Saint Croix set up on google, literally putting the territory on the map. The project led to new relationships and a growing role in the community. Kirk now serves on the board of directors for the Chamber of Commerce and has a growing interest in economic development but the more he knows, the more he realizes the need for a unified vision and plan.

Bring in V-REEL™

Kirk’s questions continued. “Who are we as a private sector and what do we want out of our workforce? What do we want out of the government? What do we want out of companies operating on the island?

Kirk recognizes that building an economy requires engaged community. He is trying to understand the values of whole groups of people, some with very different perspectives, and think through potential strategies. He understands the need to step back and think about the unique history of the territory, it’s strong competencies, potential eroding factors, and the need to put enablers in place. Perhaps that’s why Kirk is now thinking about how to institute V-REEL™ across his community in order to have a more productive conversation.

“If everyone speaks the same language that communication builds upon itself towards whatever end, whatever our goal may be,” he said. “The V-REEL™ framework is broad enough that it fits a lot of different circumstances at different levels in life, and is specific enough to keep people on track and focused.”

A Roadmap

People often times have an innate intuition that they need something–a specific enabling factor–to help them create value. However, they do not necessarily connect those factors to develop distinctive competencies for real value creation. Kirk’s strategic thinking about his own ability to contribute in a community toward common vision and economic vitality offers great insights for anyone working with a large team or community to build a common way forward. Kirk is looking to employ V-REEL™ as a roadmap for value creation. Whether working with a territory or an individual, the questions remain the same, “Towards what end? What do we want to become?” Lots of good stuff in this episode. Enjoy.