Writing an effective Mission Statement is very important because a mission statement expresses the purpose of a company. It tells the world the reason for the existence of your company. A business can unify the organization by writing a powerful mission statement.
Your mission statement is a mixture of your businesses’ work and methods of work expressed in a way that translates the values important for the business.
A mission statement is easy to understand the action-oriented one-line sentence that explains the purpose of your company.
It sums up what your company does for the shareholders, customers, and all employees, and usually includes non-specific descriptions of the organization, core functions, and goals. Basically, you are telling the reader why your company exists and how you are different from other companies. Therefore this mission statement is an almost necessary part of a business plan. And it usually comes right after the executive summary.
It depends on the businesses’ focus, the mission statement may include a broader description. Along with the explanation of how your company would serve its customers and employees, the mission statement may also include social and environmental objectives.
You can use this guide as an example for writing a mission statement for your own company. Following are the five steps I have come up with after reading and writing several hundreds of mission statements
Let this define your story by telling the need or want of the market that your company fulfills. And tell it so that any unique defining factor or competitive advantage is clearly communicated.
In other words, after reading this statement there shall remain no confusion about what the business does and what it doesn’t do.
You can accomplish this by thinking of a person reading this statement to decide if the person should buy your product or not. Why does that person want it? How did the person find your business? How does this product help them? The better the story, the better the response will be from the customer.
It’s crucial to have in your head while you sit to write your businesses’ mission statement. If you’re having difficulty getting started, make a quick list of your company’s DOs and DON’Ts.
There’s no need to complicate things here. What is the product or service or a combination that your business produces? Get down to the very basics and don’t add unnecessary filler. You can expand on this purpose in the coming steps.
My company’s purpose is to:
Sell women’s clothing
Provide Tutoring services
Grow organic vegetables
Design Apple mobile apps
Provide financial advice
Sell women’s clothing
Provide pet walking services
The first part was straightforward, now this section is a tricky one. In this section, we are not looking for the activities you perform rather how your business generally operates. This means that you will have to tell about the core values of your business.
So make a list of the core values of your business and then include them into the purpose written in the first step. Some sample values are given below that you could use while writing a mission statement:
Take some time to consider the core values that you may include in your mission statement. Then add this one or at most two core values to your company’s purpose statement.
Here’s what the examples from step one might look like.
My company’s purpose is to:
Remember, these are not completed yet. There are more steps to go before your mission statement is complete.
In this section, the mission statement tells the reader your reason behind doing business.
It is why you do this business? Or simply why you started this business and not choose any other business.
This is what the mission statement examples would look like when you add “why” to them:
My company’s purpose is to:
“My company’s purpose is to sell women’s clothing of the highest quality to improve the living standards of customers.”
“At Trendy Outfits, we sell women’s clothing of the highest quality to improve the living standards of customers.”
And, “Our company’s purpose is to provide financial advice that allows all clients to experience success and encourage them to invest now for the better future.”
could be better written as:
“Our company, Global Consulting, exists to provide financial advice that allows all clients to experience success and encourage them to invest now for the better future.”
Good businesses are also good for their employees otherwise they don’t last. Retaining employees is a better option for the bottom line. The company’s culture does matter. Rewarding and motivating employees also matters. A mission statement can write about your business’s offering to its employees.
I suggest that you don’t simply impose how your business is the best for employees, rather you define the benefits and forever afterward keep them true.
Qualities like diversity, fairness, respect for creativity and ideas, tools, training, and empowerment, really matter a lot. However, since all existing business at least tells that they prioritize the above-mentioned things, try to find a differentiator and try to make these general statements unique and specific to the company.
It is generally presumed that the prime objective of a business is to increase the net value of its shareholders. But in reality, for different owners the objective is different like for an NGO or not-for-profit company, the mission could be to save near extinction animals or to reduce pollution and make energy while doing so.
Only some of the best mission statements go to the lengths of having a much broader perspective incorporating the core values of the ownership.
Unilever is a global brand that has incorporated the expectations of customers, owners, and employees.
Unilever’s corporate mission is “to add vitality to life. We meet everyday needs for nutrition, hygiene, and personal care with brands that help people feel good, look good and get more out of life.”
The final stage is where you take some time to go through the process again and re-write your mission statement in a concise and meaningful way. This step ensures that your message is clear and the reader understands your business without difficulty.
A common way of doing this is to keep a detailed mission statement for the internal use of the company and a shorter version for the general public. Many companies do this by segmenting the mission statement and publishing only relevant parts at the right time of publication. You can also use bullet points or sections for writing your mission statement in a business plan.
The key is that the mission statement must resonate with your businesses’ audience and achieve your goals. As in business writing, you can change the form of the document as per your requirements. The mission statement could contain information that can also be portrayed as vision and if this works for your audience then call it such.
You should try reading other companies’ mission statements, but when the time to write a statement comes, think of what is about you and not about other companies. If you don’t remain honest with your words then the customers and the employees will soon realize that this is just a lie.
You can let everyone know what you have written and then ask for their pure opinion without convincing them otherwise.
Then continue to review and revise the mission statement whenever needed throughout the life of your business. This is the same concept as with the business plan that it should be changeable according to the changes in the business.
Value – What is the value of the business to both customers and employees?
Inspiration – Why should people want to work for the company?
Plausibility – Make it sound reasonable
Specificity – Tie it back to the business
keep it short and concise.
Don’t write an essay.
Don’t make it too limiting.
Find out your employees’ opinions.
Don’t be afraid to change it.
Your mission statement is what sets a perception about your business in the public and employees. It, therefore, influences the actions of the employees and attracts customers towards the idea that the business is trying to accomplish.