Mission Statement | Definition, Examples, How to Write [2020]

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What is Mission Statement

Mission Statement can be defined as a sentence describing a company’s function, markets and competitive advantages. It is a short written statement of your business goals and philosophies. It defines what an organisation is, why it exists and its reason for being.

Mission Statement
Mission Statement

A mission statement is a formal summary that explains:

  • What you do.
  • How you do it.
  • Why you do it.

At a minimum, a mission statement should define who are the primary customers of the company, identify the products and services it produces, and describe the geographical location in which it operates.

Missions have one or more of the five distinct and identifiable components:

  1. Customers
    We believe our first responsibility is to the doctors, nurses, patients, mothers, and all others who use our products and services. (Johnson & Johnson)

  2. Products or services
    AMAX’s principal products are molybdenum, coal, iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, petroleum and natural gas, potash, phosphates, nickel, tungsten, silver, gold, and magnesium. (AMAX Engineering Company)

  3. Markets
    We are dedicated to the total success of Corning Glass Works as a worldwide competitor. (Corning Glass Works)

  4. Concern for Survival, Growth, and Profitability
    To serve the worldwide need for knowledge at a fair profit by adhering, evaluating, producing, and distributing valuable information in a way that benefits our customers, employees, other investors, and our society. (McGraw-Hill)

  5. Philosophy
    Our world-class leadership is dedicated to a management philosophy that holds people above profits. (Kellogg)

Once a mission statement has been set, every organisation needs to periodically review and possibly revise it to make sure it accurately reflects its goals and the business and economic climates evolve.


Mission Definition

The essential purpose of the organisation, concerning particularly why it is in existence, the nature of the business it is in, and the customers it seeks to serve and satisfy.Thompson
Purpose or reason for the organisation’s existence.Hunger and Wheelen
As Fred R. David observes, a mission statement is also called a creed statement, a statement of purpose, a statement of philosophy etc. It reveals what an organisation wants to be and whom it wants to serve.Fred R. David

Importance of Mission Statement

The purpose of the mission statement is to communicate to all the stakeholders inside and outside the organisation what the company stands for and where it is headed.

Importance of Mission Statement is due to the following reasons:

  1. It helps to ensure unanimity of purpose within the organisation.

  2. It provides a basis or standard for allocating organisational resources.

  3. It establishes a general tone or organisational climate.

  4. It serves as a focal point for individuals to identify with the organisation’s purpose and direction.

  5. It facilitates the translation of objectives into tasks assigned to responsible people within the organisation.

  6. It specifies the organisational purpose and then helps to translate this purpose into objectives in such a way that cost, time and performance parameters can be assessed and controlled.

Characteristics of a Mission Statement

A good mission statement should be short, clear and easy to understand. Therefore, it should have the following characteristics of a Mission Statement:

  1. Not lengthy: A mission statement should be brief.

  2. Clearly articulated: It should be easy to understand so that the values, purposes, and goals of the organisation are clear to everybody in the organisation and will be a guide to them.

  3. Broad, but not too general: A mission statement should achieve a fine balance between specificity and generality.

  4. Inspiring: A mission statement should motivate readers to action. Employees should find it worthwhile working for such an organisation.

  5. Reflect the firm’s worth: A mission statement should generate the impression that the firm is successful, has direction and is worthy of support and investment.

  6. Relevant: A mission statement should be appropriate to the organisation in terms of its history, culture and shared values.

  7. Unique: An organisation’s mission statement should establish the individuality and uniqueness of the company.

  8. Dynamic: A mission statement should be dynamic in an orientation allowing judgments about the most promising growth directions and the less promising ones.

  9. Customer orientation: A good mission statement identifies the utility of a firm’s products or services to its customers, and attracts customers to the firm.

  10. A declaration of social policy: A mission statement should contain its philosophy about social responsibility including its obligations to the stakeholders and the society at large.

  11. Values, beliefs and philosophy: The mission statement should lay emphasis on the values the firm stands for; company philosophy, known as “company creed”, generally accompanies or appears within the mission statement.

Difference between Vision and Mission Statement

Vision

1. A mental image of a possible and desirable future state of the organization.
2. A dream.

3. Broad.
4. Answers the question “what we want to become?”

Mission

1. Enduring statement of philosophy, a creed statement.
2. The purpose or reason for a firm’s existence.
3. More specific than vision.
4. Answers the question “what is our business”.


Mission Statement Examples

Mission statements inspire others to act. Here are some Mission Statement Examples of companies you probably know.

Microsoft

Microsoft Mission Statement
Microsoft Mission Statement

"Our mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more."

Microsoft's mission statement expresses their belief in what people make possible. These beliefs and values are translated directly into their products and corporate culture.

Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines Mission Statement
Southwest Airlines Mission Statement

"The mission of Southwest Airlines is dedication to the highest quality of customer service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and company spirit."

Southwest believes that their employees are what makes them different. I mean, I've never been on a Southwest flight I didn't enjoy!

Uber

Uber Mission Statement
Uber Mission Statement

"We ignite opportunity by setting the world in motion."

Uber mission goes beyond getting people from point A to point B: With their technology, they hope to bring about new opportunities for their passengers, helping them meet new people and explore new places.

Tesla

Tesla Mission Statement
Tesla Mission Statement

"To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy."

Tesla's mission isn't just to create rocket ship cars – they put the environment first by creating top-notch electric vehicles.

The Coca-Cola Company

Coca Cola Mission Statement
Coca Cola Mission Statement

"To refresh the world in mind, body and spirit. To inspire moments of optimism and happiness through our brands and actions."

The Coca-Cola Company wants you to know how a Coke should make you feel. They aim to bring happiness and positivity to their audience, and they treat their mission and vision as a roadmap for their company's success.


How to write Mission Statement

So how to write mission statement? I’ve come up with a process for developing a useful mission statement, and it boils down to four steps.

How to write Mission Statement
How to write Mission Statement

Describe What Your Company Does

Describe What product or service does your business produce or provide?

  • Sell Burger
  • Provide educational services
  • Grow market vegetables

Describe How Your Company Does What It Does

In this step, we're looking for a description of how your business generally operates.

  • Provide superior customer service
  • Provide the environment product

Describe Why Your Company Does What It Does

It describes the passion behind your business.

  • Sell shoes of the highest quality.
  • Grow market vegetables using organic, sustainable farming practices.

Put Your New Mission Statement to Work

Once you've framed your business's new mission statement, you'll want to put it to work right away.

  • Sell mouse of the highest quality so every customer.

General FAQ

What is a Mission Statement?

A mission statement is a written declaration of an organization's core purpose and focus that normally remains unchanged over time.

What are the 3 parts of a mission statement?

A mission statement has three main parts: 1. statement of mission or vision of the company, 2. statement of the core values that shape the acts and behaviour of the employees, and 3. statement of the goals and objectives.

How long is a mission statement?

Most mission statements are two and four sentences long, but it totally depends on company to company.


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