What is Your Company’s Mission?

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When starting a company, it is important not to forget to have an overall mission and vision for the company. Your organization exists to accomplish something, and that something should be clearly stated. You will be surprised how often organizations have bad mission statements or no clear mission at all. Some benefits of having a mission statement include:

  • Communicating the direction of the organization
  • Help resolve conflicts
  • Help with general decision making
  • Keep the organization focused

The mission statement states the organization’s purpose. You can begin forging your mission statement by contemplating the following questions:

  • What is our business?
  • What should our business be?
  • Why do we exist?
  • Who is the customer?
  • What do consumers value?

These simple questions can sometimes be difficult to answer so it is important to answer them carefully and completely. After this, try to summarize this into a simple statement that is market oriented. Market oriented is better than product oriented because it is focusing on satisfying the basic consumer’s needs. Products tend to become outdated or obsolete, but market needs may last forever.
Some examples of product-oriented vs market-oriented:

Company Name Product-Oriented Market-Oriented
Royal Dutch Shell We find, extract, refine and sell oil. We refine and deliver energy solutions in a sustainable way.
Michelin We make tires. We provide service to people and their transportation.
eBay We hold online auctions. We provide global a global marketplace where practically anyone can trade practically anything.
EasyJet We sell cheap flights. We provide our customers with safe, good value, point-to-point air service.

Your mission statement should guide your organization, help cultivate the organizational culture and engage/attract people.

It is up to the organization to decide whether or not they will have a formal mission statement. Remember that it shouldn’t just be written for PR (public relations) purposes. It should be something achievable and motivating. It should not be discussed in terms of profit. Profit is just a reward for creating good customer value that is accomplished through a well-defined and market-focused mission.

The mission statement shouldn’t be confused with the vision statement. While mission focuses on the present, the vision should focus on the future. This is what your organization wants to achieve over time. It should help guide employees to the goal they are helping accomplish with their day-to-day work.

Examples of vision statements from a few companies:

Company Vision
Microsoft Empower people through great software anytime, anyplace, and on any device.
Avon To be the company that best understands and satisfies the product, service and self-fulfillment needs of women – globally.
IKEA Create a better everyday life for the many people.
WWF We seek to save a planet, a world of life. Reconciling the needs of human beings and the needs of others that share the Earth.

It is never too late to define a mission and vision for your organization. Also, it is important to clearly and consistently communicate it to your employees.
We’ll end this blog with a quote by Jack Welch from General Electric.
“Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion.”

One thought on “What is Your Company’s Mission?”

  1. Many companies, non-profits and other organizations briefly describe their aspirations in the form of mission statements and/or slogans. These rarely provide any insight into the company, what it does, or the impact it has. Rather they focus on platitudes rather than the kind of specifics Wikipedia aspires to. In short, they rarely tell us anything useful and do not help establish the notability of the company or organization.

    While these statements may be very meaningful to those in the organization, they are rarely differentiable from any other mission statement. If a mission statement doesn’t describe the organization, help readers understand how this organization is unique and doesn’t support the notability of the subject, it probably should not be transcribed in full in the article.

    In some cases, it might be appropriate to paraphrase a lengthy mission statement, thus removing the flowery, self-promotional language. For example, if a company mission statement uses weasel words to claim that the firm aims at “producing amplifiers that are widely seen as the most premium, pro-grade gear, that is of legendary quality”, this might be paraphrased as “The firm’s mission statement states that the company aims to produce quality products.” But in the end, is this goal any different than any other similar business? Does it tell us anything?

    ref: wikipedia

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