What is a Mission Statement?
A mission statement defines what line of business a company is in, and why it exists or what purpose it serves. Every company should have a precise statement of purpose that gets people excited about what the company does and motivates them to become part of the organization. A mission statement should also define the company’s corporate strategy and is generally a couple of sentences in length.
Example of a Mission Statement
Let’s look at Microsoft Corp.’s mission statement. Microsoft Corp. is an American multinational company that develops, manufactures, licenses, and sells technology products, including computer software, electronics, and personal computers. It is also one of the largest corporations in the world, alongside companies such as Apple, Inc. and Amazon.com, Inc.
Microsoft’s mission is:
The statement above is a good example of a mission statement because it provides a broad enough scale of scope to explain what the company can do, and it is also inspirational – it’s all about empowering people. It is the kind of statement that people can get excited about and can rally behind. It also defines Microsoft’s strategy, which is reaching out to the whole world and making an influence on all individuals and organizations.
Why is a Mission Statement Important?
As shown in the diagram above, the combination of a mission statement, vision, and values tells a full story about Microsoft’s businesses and points out the things that matter to the company. Being able to build an influential statement is the first step to business success because all strategies are developed and executed with a solid mission as the foundation. The statement guides the management team in implementing strategies that help reinforce the company’s identity and achieve its goals.
It is important for:
- Motivating employees
- Inspiring customers
- Strategic planning
- Setting values
- Understanding why a business exists
The Rise of a Purpose Statement
The mission statement, vision, and values are traditionally the three most common descriptions of a business that explain why a company exists. In recent years, another type of statement has also emerged in the business world and is gaining more popularity. This type of statement is called a purpose statement.
A purpose statement conveys a company’s reason for existence, just as the mission statement and vision do, but it also shows the connection between the brand identity and workplace culture of the company. It combines the components of a mission statement, vision, and values into a single statement.
Thank you for visiting our resource on how companies can use a mission statement to help support their overall strategy. To learn more about business strategy, check out our Corporate & Business Strategy course, which covers all important terminologies and theories on strategy, and demonstrates the whole strategic analysis process.
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