Mission & Vision
Mission & Vision
Defining the mission, or purpose, of your business is a critical step in giving it a “scope” or space within which it should be competitive. Some organizations have a too-narrow purpose and fight to “burst out” of it, while other have a too-vague (or too wide) purpose and therefore wander, lost in the wilderness. Putting this purpose into a clear mission can therefore present a challenge.
Mission Statements Not Well Defined
In the diagram at the left, the mission is very broad, and the organization is not truly fulfilling it; this could mean offerings need to be expanded to reach it, or the mission needs to be refocused. In the right circle, the organization is over-reaching its mission, or it is out of date in accordance with the organization’s current operating area. The organization needs to refocus its activities, or expand its mission.
But does an unfocused mission have real-world repercussions? The problem with either of these scenarios is that your staff will either feel that you are always falling short of the mission (in other words, thinking that the mission is meaningless, and will never realistically be achieved) or, they may feel that your organization is aimlessly shooting off in every direction, without a unified sense of purpose. This may cause them to perform functions that are really not a good fit for your organization. Ultimately, both scenarios detract from your competitive strength.
A strong mission actually should push the organization’s envelope slightly, as a good goal would, like the diagram below:
A Mission Statement Well-Defined
How to Write a Mission Statement
Whether you prefer a short or detailed mission statement, consider first identifying the need you fill, or reason you exist. Then, describe with succinct words how you fulfill that need. You can also include words that set you apart from others offering similar services. An example is below, from Tenato’s mission statement:
“Too often, organizational growth becomes stalled due to the daily necessity to focus on present, rather than future, thinking. At Tenato, we use innovative research and progressive strategic planning to help our clients realize their industry-leading potential, and support them with superior resources to ensure they achieve it.”
Developing a Corporate Vision
Once your mission is clarified, we can then assist you fleshing out a comprehensive vision. The vision actually is a definition of the ideal view of your future, wherein your organization is completely and profitably satisfying the problems it most stridently cares about. It is best to have a broad vision which can then guide the strategic planning process. This vision should include:
- The size (revenue, number of employees) you wish to become
- The reach (geographic, and markets) you would like to serve
- The capabilities (people, equipment, skills, offering) you would like to have
- The brand recognition (reputation, and what you might be best known for)
Once the above is determined, you are ready to begin optimizing your offerings to ensure they measure up to your vision.
Click to continue to Offering Refinement.