Let’s have a look at a few mission statements below:
“To take part in a severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy, timid ignorance obstructing our progress.”
“To bringing the best user experience to its customers through its innovative hardware, software, and services.”
“To elevate the world from mediocrity to greatness.”
The above quotes are company mission statement examples from popular brands: The Economist, Apple, and Lululemon Athletica.
What do they have in common?
All of them are simple and precise and inform the readers, internal or external to the company, what it wishes to achieve for its consumers.
Thus, a mission statement sums up the purpose of the company/business. And big companies don’t just have a mission statement; they follow through as well.
The people know it because, year after year, these companies stick to their mission. But what makes them stick to their mission is the universality of it. They choose a mission statement that will stay fresh for eternity.
Why should you be creating a mission statement?
If you want to make a brand for posterity, there has to be a binding thread. Your mission statement is that thread. If carefully woven into the very fabric of your company, it ensures that people stay on track with the company goals. It also helps build the company culture and employee attitude.
Most companies that make it big have an inside-out approach to their communication strategy. So, an average company will first inform people what they do, how they do it, and finally, why. In contrast, more prominent companies take the reverse approach.
And why is this?
Well, because people are emotional and they connect with things that have an emotional appeal. The why and, to some extent, the how-to establish that connection with the customers. A mission statement, which sets the why, is the binding agent for your customers and employees.
It’s helpful to write a company’s mission statement in what way
You cannot churn out a mission statement using a data tool that helps you analyze hundreds of mission statements. So what goes into creating inspiring mission statements?
Must be broad
A good mission statement must not be too specific, or it would be stifling for the brand. For a brand to grow into a conglomerate, the mission statement must align with the company goals. But it should still be broad enough to allow the growth of the company and its goals.
Must be concise
The whole purpose of a mission statement is that employees and customers remember why they must stick with you. Also, people have short memories. So they would hardly remember any long-drawn prose.
Must be a guiding light
Everything that you or your employees do must be in sync with the company goals. The mission statement is what strings together all these goals.
For example, Lululemon’s mission statement sets the company’s agenda as motivating people and giving them a seamless work-life experience even as they live through a drab, mediocre world of struggles.
Also, whenever you decide to make big strategic changes, you must have a benchmark to check against; the mission statement serves as that benchmark.
Must establish why you’re different
Many companies providing similar services clutter the markets. Thus, the what of these businesses is the same.
So, what will make you cut through the noise?
The purpose of your existence must be different from that of your competitor.
Must agree with your employees
Once in a while, it may be good to learn what your employees have to say about your mission statement. Do short surveys to find out what they would change and why.
Must be flexible
Sometimes, as the company grows, it may outgrow the mission. That’s when you should be able to alter it to fit your then goals.
How to write a good mission statement?
Some key elements go into creating a mission statement that will stick. Let’s see what:
What value proposition does your business provide for your customers and employees? Remember to tug on their emotions and, possibly, even deep-seated desires.
LinkedIn’s mission is short and speaks to the users directly about the value it provides them. In a globalizing world, LinkedIn has indeed dissipated boundaries and allowed professionals to connect with global opportunities.
What inspires people to work for you? For example, what growth prospects do you offer? TED’s mission is to “spread ideas.” This simple two-word mission aligns with their short, mostly 18-minute talks that inspire people and their employees.
An airy-fairy mission statement does not cut it with customers and employees. So keep your mission statement believable.
PayPal’s mission “providing simple, affordable, secure and reliable financial services…” embodies in its functioning. The service enables making and receiving payments from anywhere in the world a breeze.
You cannot take Lululemon’s mission and use it for The Economist. Get the picture? A direct link with your business is a must.
Nordstrom’s mission of “providing our customers with the best possible service — and improving it every day” is specific. However, they also outline how they hope to make their services the best.
A good mission statement example is one that reflects your company’s core values. It also builds your brand and drives internal actions and decisions. So make that extra effort for an excellent mission statement.