Writing Your Mission Statement: 4 Questions You Must Ask Before You Start

Jan 12


Adam Bauthues

Adam Bauthues

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Most mission statements contain just a few sentences that will answer the following four questions...


A properly designed mission statement can really help you focus on your business better. When you make up your mind to begin writing a mission statement,Writing Your Mission Statement: 4 Questions You Must Ask Before You Start Articles it requires that you relax and really consider what you want to accomplish with your business beyond getting money. A mission statement needs to explain why your business exists. It guides your actions (and the actions of your whole organization) by providing a path toward reaching the business's goals.

Most mission statements incorporate just a few sentences that answer:.

1) Why does your business exist?

If you really don't know why you are doing this, you can't do it efficiently.

2) Who does your business exist for?

You need to know your target market to deliver the right products and services.

3) What product or services do you offer to them?

If you can't explain what you offer, it will be hard to move forward. It is straightforward if your product is tangible, like ice-cream or widgets.

4) How is your business unique?

What separates your products/services from the competition? Why are yours superior?

Once you address these questions, regard that your rough draft, through which you can now find far better words to describe each answer, forming a cohesive mission statement.

Your mission statement comprises just a few sentences, making up a concise paragraph that describes why your business exists, for whom, what products or services you provide, and how they're different from the competition. The words you use must be understandable to your target market. Get the opinion of your audience about whether it makes sense or not.

Your mission statement is for you and those who work for you to keep focus on what is important. It doesn't need to really resonate with those outside of the business. But it does need to help guide you along and inspire you to reach the ideas within the mission statement. It will need to portray what is truly important about your business, other than money.

The mission statement should focus on your core competency. What is it that you do for others? Let's consider a couple mission statements for an example.

An Architects' Mission Statement: NewSouth Architects, http://www.jamescaudle.com/.

"Our Mission: To design and build dreams through excellence in design talent, inspirational leadership, budget consciousness, sustainable and innovative architecture while adhering to the highest in creative and ethical standards to achieve overwhelming client satisfaction.".

It is crystal clear what this company's mission is when reading this mission statement. They're in the design business but also in the bringing dreams to life business. Sure, they generate income, but it is not the mission.

Ben & Jerry's Mission Statement: Ben & Jerry's, http://www.benjerry.com.

"Social Mission: To operate the Company in a way that actively recognizes the central role that business plays in society by initiating innovative ways to improve the quality of life locally, nationally and internationally.

Product Mission: To make, distribute and sell the finest quality all natural ice cream and euphoric concoctions with a continued commitment to incorporating wholesome, natural ingredients and promoting business practices that respect the Earth and the Environment.

Economic Mission: To operate the Company on a sustainable financial basis of profitable growth, increasing value for our stakeholders and expanding opportunities for development and career growth for our employees.".

Two very different examples, but none of them speak of getting money as their mission. One is short and concise, and one has longer and more elaborate missions for different areas. You can be as sophisticated as you want with your mission statement, and you can have more than one mission statement, like Ben & Jerry's. But the point is to give you and your employees a reason for being, an answer regarding what you do, who you do it for, and why you do it.