HOME

TheInfoList



A mission statement is a short statement of why an organization exists, what its overall goal is, identifying the goal of its operations: what kind of product or service it provides, its primary customers or
market Market may refer to: *Market (economics) *Market economy *Marketplace, a physical marketplace or public market Geography *Märket, an island shared by Finland and Sweden Art, entertainment, and media Films *Market (1965 film), ''Market'' (1965 ...
, and its geographical region of operation. It may include a short statement of such fundamental matters as the organization's values or philosophies, a business's main competitive advantages, or a desired future state—the "vision". A mission is not simply a description of an organization by an external party, but an expression, made by its leaders, of their desires and intent for the organization. The purpose of a mission statement is to communicate the organisation's purpose and direction to its employees, customers, vendors, and other stakeholders. A mission statement also creates a sense of identity for its employees. Organizations normally do not change their mission statements over time, since they define their continuous, ongoing purpose and focus. According to Chris Bart, professor of strategy and governance at
McMaster University McMaster University (McMaster or Mac) is a public university, public research university in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. The main McMaster campus is on of land near the residential neighbourhoods of Ainslie Wood, Ontario, Ainslie Wood and Westda ...
, a commercial mission statement consists of three essential components: # Key market: the target audience # Contribution: the product or service # Distinction: what makes the product unique or why the audience should buy it over another Bart estimates that in practice, only about ten percent of mission statements say something meaningful. For this reason, they are widely regarded with contempt.


Purpose

The sole purpose of a mission statement is to serve as a company's goal/agenda, it outlines clearly what the goal is. Some generic examples of mission statements would be, "To provide the best service possible within the banking sector for our customers." or "To provide the best experience for all of our customers." The reason why businesses make use of mission statements is to make it clear what they look to achieve as an organization, not only to themselves and their employees but to the customers and other people who are a part of the business, such as shareholders. As a company evolves, so will their mission statement. This is to make sure that the company remains on track and to ensure that the mission statement does not lose its touch and become boring or stale. It is important that a mission statement is not confused with a
vision statement A vision statement is an inspirational statement of an idealistic emotional future of a company or group. Vision describes the basic human emotion that a founder intends to be experienced by the people the organization interacts with, it grounds t ...
. As discussed earlier, the main purpose of a mission statement is to get across the ambitions of an organisation in a short and simple fashion; it is not necessary to go into detail for the mission statement which is evident in examples given. The reason why it is important that a mission statement and vision statement are not confused is because they both serve different purposes. Vision statements tend to be more related to strategic planning and lean more towards discussing where a company aims to be in the future.


Advantages

Provides direction: Mission statements are a way to direct a business into the right path. They play a part in helping the business make better decisions which can be beneficial to them. Without the mission statement providing direction, businesses may struggle when it comes to making decisions and planning for the future. This is why providing direction could be considered one of the most advantageous points of a mission statement. Clear purpose: Having a clear purpose can remove any potential ambiguities that may surround the existence of a business. People who are interested in the progression of the business, such as
stakeholder Stakeholder may refer to: *Stakeholder (corporate), a group, corporate, organization, member, or system that affects or can be affected by an organization's actions *Project stakeholder, a person, group, or organization with an interest in a projec ...
s, will want to know that the business is making the right choices and progressing more towards achieving their goals, which will help to remove any doubt the stakeholders may have in the business. A mission statement can act as a motivational tool within an organisation, and it can allow employees to all work towards one common goal that benefits both the organisation and themselves. This can help with factors such as
employee satisfaction Job satisfaction or employee satisfaction is a measure of workers' contentedness with their job, whether they like the job or individual aspects or facets of jobs, such as nature of work or supervision. Job satisfaction can be measured in cognitiv ...
and productivity. It is important that employees feel a sense of purpose. Giving them this sense of purpose will allow them to focus more on their daily tasks and help them realise the goals of the organisation and their role.


Disadvantages

Although it is mostly beneficial for a business to craft a good mission statement, there are some situations where a mission statement can be considered pointless or not useful to a business. Unrealistic: In most cases, mission statements turn out to be unrealistic and far too optimistic. An unrealistic mission statement can also affect the performance and
morale Morale, also known as esprit de corps (), is the capacity of a group's members to maintain belief in an institution or goal, particularly in the face of opposition or hardship. Morale is often referenced by authority figures as a generic value j ...
of the employees within the workplace. This is because an unrealistic mission statement would reduce the likelihood of employees being able to meet this standard which could demotivate
employees Employment is a relationship between two parties, usually based on contract A contract is a legally binding document between at least two parties that defines and governs the rights and duties of the parties to an agreement. A contract is le ...

employees
in the long term. Unrealistic mission statements also serve no purpose and can be considered a waste of management's time. Another issue which could arise from an unrealistic mission statement is that poor decisions could be made in an attempt to achieve this goal which has the potential to harm the business and be seen as a waste of both time and resources. Waste of time and resources: Mission statements require planning. This takes time and effort for those who are responsible for creating the mission statement. If the mission statement is not achieved, then the process of creating the mission statement could be seen as a waste of time for all of the people involved. A lot of thought and time can be spent in designing a good mission statement, and to have all of that time wasted is not what businesses can afford. The wasted time could have been spent on much more important tasks within the organisation such as
decision-making In psychology, decision-making (also spelled decision making and decisionmaking) is regarded as the Cognition, cognitive process resulting in the selection of a belief or a course of action among several possible alternative options, it could be ...
for the
business Business is the activity of making one's living or making money by producing or buying and selling products (such as goods and services). Simply put, it is "any activity or enterprise entered into for profit." Having a business name A trade ...
.


Design

According to an independent contributor to
Forbes ''Forbes'' () is an American business magazine owned by Integrated Whale Media Investments and the Forbes family (publishers), Forbes family. Published eight times a year, it features articles on finance, industry, investing, and marketing to ...

Forbes
, the following questions must be answered in the mission statement: * “What do we do?” — The mission statement should clearly outline the main purpose of the organisation, and what they do. * “How do we do it?” — It should also mention how one plans on achieving the mission statement. * “Whom do we do it for?” — The audience of the mission statement should be clearly stated within the mission statement. * “What value are we bringing?” — The benefits and values of the mission statement should be clearly outlined. When designing a mission statement, it should be very clear to the audience what the purpose of it is. It is ideal for a business to be able to communicate their mission, goals and objectives to the reader without including any unnecessary information through the mission statement.
Richard Branson Sir Richard Charles Nicholas Branson (born 18 July 1950) is an English business magnate, investor, and author. In the 1970s he founded the Virgin Group, which today controls more than 400 companies in various fields. Branson expressed his de ...

Richard Branson
has commented on ways of crafting a good mission statement; he explains the importance of having a mission statement that is clear and straight to the point and does not contain unnecessary baffling. He went on to analyse a mission statement, using
Yahoo Yahoo! (, styled as yahoo''!'') is an American web services provider. It is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California and owned by Verizon Media, which acquired it in 2017 for $4.48 billion. It currently provides a web portal, search engine ...
's mission statement at the time (2013) as an example. In his evaluation of the mission statement, he seemed to suggest that while the statement sounded interesting, most people would not be able to understand the message it is putting across. In other words, the message of the mission statement potentially meant nothing to the audience.


See also

*
Strategic planning Strategic planning is an organization An organization, or organisation (English in the Commonwealth of Nations, Commonwealth English; American and British English spelling differences#-ise, -ize (-isation, -ization), see spelling differenc ...

Strategic planning
*
Strategy Markup Language{{primary sources, date=April 2017 Strategy Markup Language (StratML) is an XML-based standard vocabulary A vocabulary, also known as a wordstock or word-stock, is a set of familiar words within a person's language. A vocabulary, usually develop ...
*
Vision statement A vision statement is an inspirational statement of an idealistic emotional future of a company or group. Vision describes the basic human emotion that a founder intends to be experienced by the people the organization interacts with, it grounds t ...


References


External links

*{{cite web, url=http://www.norcblueprint.org/toolbox/mission_statement_guidelines, website=NORC Blueprint: A Guide to Community Action, title=Mission Statement Guidelines, date=2015, publisher=United Hospital Fund, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20181002061933/http://www.norcblueprint.org:80/toolbox/mission_statement_guidelines, archive-date=October 2, 2018 Statements Business terms Strategic management