Purpose - The purpose of this article is to examine the relationships between vision attributes (of brevity, clarity, challenge, stability, abstractness, future orientation, and desirability or ability to inspire) and content (relating to customer and staff satisfaction imageries), and customer and staff satisfaction in Australian retail stores, taking into account vision realisation factors of vision communication, organisational alignment, motivation, empowerment and a staff personal factor comprised of staff emotional commitment to and use of the vision. Design/methodology/approach - Variables of vision attributes and content, vision communication, organisational alignment, motivation, empowerment and staff personal factor were derived from the literature. Data were from store managers, staff and customers of 101 apparel stores in Sydney. These variables were tested for significant relationships through chi-square and regression analyses. Findings - Findings endorse the importance of espousing a vision containing reference to customer and staff satisfaction, although the seven attributes variable was not significant in this study. Empowerment of staff and staff personal factor were directly predictive of enhanced customer satisfaction, while motivation and empowerment of staff, and staff personal factor were directly predictive of enhanced staff satisfaction. Practical implications - Retail store managers should develop a store vision containing reference to customer and staff satisfaction. They should communicate their vision, align organisational components with the vision, empower and motivate staff. Staff should also use the vision to guide their work and emotionally commit to the vision. Original/value - While vision is core to vision-based leadership theories, little is known about what characterises an effective vision. This study attempts to uncover this unknown.