The Visionary & The Integrator – The Ultimate Dynamic Duo
Even the best superheroes have partners. Wearing a cape means that it takes someone particularly understanding to enter into a relationship that is likely to be fraught with peril.
These pairings often come and go – but when two superheroes can make it work, legendary relationships can be forged and become important aspects of superhero history. Business is no different. The ultimate dynamic duo in business is the pairing of the Visionary and Integrator – two vital roles at the top of most entrepreneurial businesses. Every pilot needs a co-pilot, every composer, a conductor and every true Visionary needs to be counter-balanced with a great Integrator if he or she wants his or her vision to be fully realised.
There are many world-famous corporate duos such as Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard, Warren Buffet and Charlie Munger, and Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. Many large companies may not exist today if they hadn’t had a Visionary/Integrator dynamic duo in their early years. Countless others had the same stories when they were small and growing companies and thanks to strong work ethics and complementary skills sets, these famous business partnerships have yielded incredible results.
In their book ‘Rocket Fuel’, Gino Wickman and Mark C. Winters define how Visionaries and Integrators can work to find each other, work together and maximize their relationship, vision, and company. A Visionary tends to be the founding entrepreneur, is a great leader with lots of big ideas focused on Big Relationships and Big Sales, and is a creative problem solver. Unfortunately, he or she also can create chaos, has limited patience for details, gets distracted by shiny stuff, and wants to implement every single one of his or her ideas immediately.
An Integrator is the person who thrives on putting systems and processes in place to bring order to the chaos. He or she is a great taskmaster and manager, is good at holding people accountable, creating consistency; and integrating the leadership team.
According to Rocket Fuel research, only 1 out of 20 Visionaries (5%) possesses both skill sets of the Visionary and Integrator which makes these a very rare breed. Furthermore, in SME’s there is around a 4-to-1 ratio of Visionaries to Integrators, so a good Integrator is hard to find.
The more contrasting the Visionary’s and Integrator’s skill sets are, the bigger the impact on the organisation. With the Visionary and Integrator joining forces in their superhero roles to work well together, your leadership team will have a new level of impact on your company, your employees, your customers, clients and, ultimately, the world.
Photo by Sallie The Cape Lady