Ahh, the mission statement. For some companies it simply describes their purpose for existing. For others it permeates the overall culture of the company. Some see its value, while others neglect to give it even a passing thought.
Whatever your position on having a corporate mission statement, you should know that your image is tied to your mission. And companies that don't have a clearly defined image usually don't have a mission statement. All success-bound companies need one, if for no other purpose than to stay focused on your core competencies, the very reason you're in business in the first place.
Your mission statement is a one-sentence description of why your business exists. What do you do? What product or service do you provide? To whom do you provide this service?
When developing your mission statement, be sure to avoid business-babble and industry-speak. This definitive statement of your business' existence should be easy to remember and to relay to your audiences, and it should be simple enough for the average customer to understand it.
Take a tip from these top companies:
To enable people and businesses throughout the world to realize their full potential.
Motorola, Inc. is a global leader in wireless, broadband and automotive communications technologies and embedded electronics products.
Our appeal and success are built on providing the most expansive selection of DVDs; an easy way to choose movies; and fast, free delivery.
SIRIUS Satellite Radio:
SIRIUS is changing the way America listens to music, sports, news, and entertainment.
Not only do corporations and small businesses need a mission statement to guide their operations, but so do not-for-profit organizations. See how these familiar agencies describe their purpose:
The American Heart Association:
To reduce disability and death from cardiovascular diseases and stroke.
Volunteers of America:
Volunteers of America is a national, nonprofit, spiritually based organization providing local human service programs and opportunities for individual and community involvement.
National Urban League:
The Urban League is the nation's oldest and largest community-based movement empowering African Americans to enter the economic and social mainstream.
Notice the mention of the product or service provided and to whom it is provided. These companies and organizations know the value of a mission statement and how to communicate it. So put your mission statement to paper, communicate it often and review it regularly to ensure that it expresses the growth of your company.
Anita Paul is a freelance writer, marketing consultant and owner of The Write Image, a marketing communications company that caters to small businesses and non-profit organizations. She has over ten years experience in marketing and public relations, and is the author of "Take The Mystery Out Of Marketing" a guide to help business owners create, execute and evaluate a strategic marketing plan. She can be reached at APaul@thewriteimage.net or http://www.thewriteimage.net