So far in our branding series we’ve talked about our first two steps in the branding process: learning about your history and writing a vision statement. Next, our mission, should we choose to accept it, is to help you write an insightful, powerful statement about who your company is.
What Is a Mission Statement?
A mission statement is generally a one-sentence, clear, concise statement that says who you are, what you do, for whom and where. If you already have a mission statement, we can help you boost it up to the next level. If you don’t, well, that’s what we’re here for!
Some questions we’ll ask you to make sure we wholly encapsulate your mission are:
- [Purpose] Why do you exist?
- [Business] What do you actually do to pursue the purpose?
- [Values] What do you value, and how does that direct or motivate your purpose?
What Benefits Does a Mission Statement Offer?
Mission statements are one of the most used management tools. Companies spend thousands of dollars and countless hours developing the perfect statement that completely defines who they are. Why put so much effort into just a few short sentences? Because the benefits are huge.
Communicate the direction of the organization.
It’s much easier to trust a company when they honestly disclose who they are and what they are doing. When employees and customers are able see that, it makes them feel more secure, which leads to higher productivity and increased close rate.
Stay focused on what matters.
Having something to look back on to remind yourself why you are doing what you’re doing and who you are at the heart of it all will allow you to ground yourself in future decision-making processes. It is easy to get swept away with all of the on-goings of the industry around you, and sometimes you just need a reminder of what brought you there in the first place.
Mission statements are a team effort. Oftentimes, companies consult each team member one-on-one to discuss how they view the company, what matters to them, and where they see things moving to in the future. That makes employees feel important and heard. A completed statement will motivate them and give them a goal to work towards, especially if they feel invested in it.
How Do You Write a Good Mission Statement?
It can be difficult to take everything you are and all that you do and narrow it down to one or two clear, concise sentences. Some tips to help you craft a great statement are:
- Keep it brief – shoot for 35 words or less.
- Keep it simple and use straight-forward language.
- Be as specific and relevant as possible.
- Be honest.
- State what makes you different.
- Answer the right questions.
“The YMCA of San Francisco, based in Judeo-Christian heritage [Values], seeks to enhance the lives of all people [Purpose] through programs designed to develop spirit, mind and body [Business].”
“At the Developmental Studies Center we develop, evaluate, and disseminate programs [Business] that foster children’s ethical, social, and intellectual development [Purpose]. While nurturing children’s capacity to think skillfully and critically, we also strive to deepen children’s commitment to prosocial values such as kindness, helpfulness, personal responsibility, and respect for others – qualities we believe are essential to leading humane and productive lives in a democratic society [Values].”