A mission statement is an action-oriented sentence (or short paragraph) that defines the organization’s purpose and values. They are a critical part of business and culture development. They are necessary for clarifying the strategic direction of the company and play an integral role in deciding on the further course of the organization.
The mission has a short-term nature. It differs from vision statements, which define the goals and aspirations of an organization. Although both are used to define an organization’s purpose, vision statements are long-term.
Mission statements also play an important role in defining a company’s primary goals along with its products and services. They emphasize the basic principles of business, such as what the business does and who it does it for.
Mission Do’s and Don’ts
Successful mission statements are difficult to write and even more difficult to instill in a company’s culture. However, if done now, they can be used to unify your workforce and boost your company’s marketing.
Good mission statements are easy to understand and use words in common language to express the organization’s purpose. Complex statements with lots of buzzwords are often ineffective in conveying company policies and dilute their purpose. Furthermore, they should also not have any grammatical or spelling errors. Their goal should be to inspire workers to deliver exactly what the customer wants. They should bring your employees to a common purpose and strengthen their thought process.
Finally, the mission statement should be relevant enough to be used in the future. They should be measurable and achievable. This is important because vague and unmeasurable statements will only boost employee morale in the short term. More often than not, such statements cause stress and demoralize your workers. For example, the statement “we strive to provide the best service to our clients” is too ambiguous. However, something like “a customer-centric business that strives to ensure their customers receive the latest technology at the lowest possible cost” is measurable.
How does a mission statement influence an organization’s culture?
Mission statements have a huge impact on company culture and company ethos. They can also help with recruitment and branding strategy. Some companies also use them to boost their public image. Brainstorming ideas using a mission statement can also help leaders make product decisions. Let’s take a look at how an effective mission statement can sustain company culture.
Strategic decision-making at the highest levels of an organization can be difficult to plan and execute. Mission statements provide organizational leaders with a clear sense of purpose and motive, helping them make decisions in line with the organization’s goals. It also guides them and helps them create policies and decisions that align with the organization’s vision.
Set the culture
Employees easily forget ambiguous statements from the company handbook. However, communicating the focus of your business through a mission statement can have a huge impact on employee morale.
Focused mission statements guide employees and help them remember their core commitment to serving customers. It also gives them a sense of shared ownership, allowing them to work toward a common goal of serving the company and the client. You can also use them to familiarize new employees with the company’s motto and goals. Finally, changing your mission statement can send a powerful message to the workforce, as can urgent internal communications.
Selection of projects and clients
Mission statements enable organizational leaders to make dynamic investments in the company’s future. They do this by identifying the company’s goals and objectives and using them to identify suitable business prospects. Leaders then seek to turn these prospects into opportunities, both in terms of finance and growth.
Understanding this can help you identify potential clients, create service contracts, and offer relevant information to interested parties. It also facilitates the product and feature selection process; instead of thinking about the profitability of the features, you should think about how it fits your company’s ideology and helps you fulfill your mission.
Defining your organizational values
For most businesses, corporate culture is an accumulation of corporate values that are defined by their core ideologies and core values. However, imparting core values to new clients can be difficult. Therefore, mission statements are designed in accordance with core values that can be used in marketing (advertisements, websites, brochures) to convey your message.
For an organization’s managers, the core values, along with the mission statement, should guide strategic investments. Their current use should also enable managers to understand the shortcomings of employees and guide them. Experienced managers can use mission statements to set behavioral goals with employees.
A mission statement can also be used to guide new hires about the company culture. Introduces them to the organization’s values and helps them understand (and manage) expectations. You can also use it to express the meaningful purpose with which the company was built.
Mission statements help employees gain confidence in their leadership and understand their point of view. This increases employee engagement and allows them to work towards a common goal. Working toward a common goal can also encourage employees to diversify their skills and invest in the future. Such efforts can directly feed change and encourage them to work towards organizational success. Employees who understand the mission of their organization are thus motivated to perform better and optimize their productivity.
A mission statement can also facilitate trust between management and employees by allowing management to be transparent with employees about what values they expect to see. Company management can also use this information to assess employee growth and identify top performers who can be motivated and promoted up the corporate ladder.
Responsibility and growth
Mission statements, as mentioned above, are major beacons for productivity and trust. They help employees understand the company culture and save them from misdirection. This is important for growth because innovation can only come from employees working together to optimize current processes.
Most companies drive innovation by creating new products/processes or optimizing the use of existing ones. In both scenarios, mission statements drive creativity, encourage new ideas, and encourage employees to take risks for continuous improvement.
In addition, mission statements hold employees accountable. They can be used to set clear expectations for employees. This reduces confusion and helps employees better understand their roles. It also ensures that employees take responsibility for their actions and perform their job role responsibly.
Recruitment of new employees
Mission statements are a huge help in attracting new talent to an organization. Many interested professionals today read the organization’s mission statement and “About” page before submitting their application. A strong mission statement clearly shows the fundamental purpose and motivations of the organization. It inspires potential employees to look at organizational goals and compare them to their personal goals. Recruiters can also use this information to eliminate retention issues and improve overall job satisfaction.
Mission statements allow different teams to collaborate and work toward a common goal, not just within the organization. Also manages collaboration with external vendors, partners and suppliers.
A supportive culture where everyone helps each other rather than working towards individual goals is very important. It can help leaders create a strong sense of community within the organization. Employees are interconnected and help each other in times of need. They also believe in collaborative learning (and working) that can reduce workplace injuries and pain points.
Mission statements are essential for shaping organizational culture and for deciding the company’s next course of action. They are very useful for reminding employees about the company’s goals and the purpose of work. They also allow management to focus on important priorities and enable them to make decisions for the long-term success of the company.
If you’re creating your company’s mission statement, it’s best to keep it achievable, direct, and simple. Simple mission statements can effectively communicate your work purpose and thought process to your clients and employees. On the other hand, ambiguous and unattainable statements can damage your organizational morale. They can also cause unnecessary stress in your workforce.
Mission statements can be a great management tool because they allow managers to share the culture and expectations of the organization with new and existing employees. They also play an important role in building a holistic corporate culture and can be used to attract new talent to the organization.