This all sounds very corporate and business like however a mission statement as a business tool has been around for a long time and is one of those things that is cool to have then not so cool But whether you make it public or not it’s a useful thing to have written out and I will explain why.
A well-crafted mission statement helps you focus on your business better. When you decide to create a mission statement, it requires that you sit down and truly consider what you want to accomplish with your business outside of making money. A mission statement needs to explain why your business exists. It guides your actions (and the actions of your entire organisation) by providing a path toward reaching the business’s goals. It’s the “Why” aspect of your business
Most mission statements are not like war and peace
I talk about focus alot in business and your mission statement helps you and your employee’s or contractors do just that. Answering just a few questions can make a huge difference in reminding you what the core of your business is about and showing your prospects and customers clearly the premise behind your business and you.
Why does your business exist?
If you don’t know why you’re doing it, how can you do it well?
Who does your business exist for?
You have to know your audience to deliver and package the right products and services. This will really help you get your marketing right, your business language right and create the feel that is aligned with your target audience.
What product or services do you offer?
If you can’t describe what you provide, it’ll be hard to move forward. It’s easy if your product is tangible, such as Jaffa Cakes or dog leads a bit more tricky if you are a trainer or coach or even offer digital products. This is also great for realising just where your sales may be coming from if your offers are confusing to you then it will never make sense to a prospect, time to tidy up and make it crystal clear what your offerings are.
What differentiates your products and or services from the competition? Why are yours better? what is your USP and yes it is still very relevant in today’s world of business. Is it you are you the difference? is it the way you deliver your training, is it a guarantee that nobody else offers? there can be lots of things we overlook that are very unique when looking inwarly from further afield.
Once you have answered these questions, consider that your rough draft or outline in which you can now find better words to describe each answer, forming a cohesive mission statement.
Your mission statement comprises of just a few sentences, making up a concise paragraph that describes why your business exists, for whom, what products you deliver, and how they’re different from the competition. The words you use must be understandable to your audience. 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 have to really resonate with those outside of the business. But it does need to help guide you forward and inspire you to reach the ideas within the mission statement. It needs to describe what’s truly important about your business, outside of money.
The mission statement should focus on your core competency. What is it that you do for others? Let’s look at a mission statement from a well know company
A Great Example
Ben & Jerry’s Mission Statement: Ben & Jerry’s, http://www.benjerry.com
“Social Mission: To operate the Company in a way that actively recognises 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.”
you will notice nowhere does it mention making money as their mission. You can be as elaborate 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 as to what you do, who you do it for, and why you do it.
Feel free to share with me what your mission statement is in the comments.
To your Success