Why are you in business? Why are you working so hard to make your enterprise successful? Why are you excited about the future of your company?
Answering these lofty questions is a must for business owners because articulating the “why” gives your work meaning. Finding the why also provides the basis for one of the most important tenets your company can develop— its mission statement.
Your mission statement gives you an opportunity to codify, institutionalize, and immortalize your purpose. It’s a promise to yourself and your family, employees, and community. It allows you to differentiate your company, state your goals, and reflect your values in writing.
Creating a mission statement doesn’t have to be a long, drawn-out process. In fact, the best mission statements are often the most straightforward.
Define. Use your mission statement to not only succinctly define what your company does, but also define your approach to business. Use authentic, concrete language and avoid jargon and buzzwords, which don’t age well.
Inspire. Keep various audiences in mind—your customers, your employees, and your family. What does your company do for them? Your mission statement should reflect your culture and attitude toward the people you serve. It should demonstrate your values and ethical standards as well.
Believe. Though it might be only a few sentences long, your mission statement can serve as a guide for company decisions, such as hiring, expansion, or strategic investments. As you contemplate various alternatives, keep your mission in mind. It can add clarity to next steps.
Your mission statement should be a living document. While the essence of your company might not change over the years, your brand will certainly morph over time, and your mission statement should adapt with it.