A company's mission, vision, and value propositions are important to success. In fact, when business consultants work with new clients, they often start with a mission, vision and values. They do this for a very simple reason. Creating (or updating) these statements can propel the organization in a new direction. You can use this mission, vision and values template to create or update your company statements.
Many of us use mission and vision interchangeably. However, the two statements differ significantly. The mission statement focuses on where the organization is now. In contrast, the vision statement paints a picture of the organization's future.
However, your organization's values are likely more important than your vision and mission. These values are the criteria by which you make decisions in your organization.
If you wanted to travel by car, the view would be the goal. The mission would be the vehicle. Finally, the values would be the directions or roadmap to get there. So you can see that each of the three is important in achieving the ultimate goal. Without a goal, we have no way of knowing whether we are getting closer to our goal. Also, without the right vehicle, the journey becomes more challenging. So, of course, your trip without a map could mean a lot of wasted time.
When using the Mission, Vision and Values template, first create a meaningful vision statement.
Before working on the mission and values, start creating a big vision. Everything else is easier when you have a clear organizational purpose and a clear picture of the destination.
First, let's talk about why you need a great vision for the future. Two forces intervene in the life cycle of every organization (and also of every human being). The past is like a tree. The past encompasses the entire history of an organization, including successes and failures. The older the organization, the more rings it has and the deeper its roots. Imagine your organization is attached to this tree with bungee cords.
As the organization's manager, you can try to make positive changes. However, recognize that you are in constant struggle with the past. Your team has certain habits that have developed over time. The organization also has processes that make change difficult. So when a new manager comes in with a lot of enthusiasm, the group can experience rapid growth. However, the further the group strays from the status quo, the more difficult the journey becomes.
Once the effort subsides, the organization will likely relapse into the past.
However, your vision statement adds a bungee cord that pulls you into the future. The stronger the vision, the more sustainable energy you can bring forward. The past will have less control over you. So start your strategic planning process by creating an inspiring vision for the future.
When creating your vision statement, DO NOT try to do it alone.
Remember that your team has ingrained habits. Your organization also has ingrained processes. If one day you show up and say, "Here's our new vision," you're going to be met with resistance. You'll be much more successful if you bring key stakeholders together to make the vision more global.
Submit a meeting agenda ahead of time so your team has a chance to think about it. You might ask them a question like, "If we were more successful than our wildest dreams, what would our organization look like?" Then, when the meeting starts, write down each idea on a flipchart. Brainstorm until you get 10-20 short answers.
Set a time limit. Your team will take as much time as you give to complete the vision statement. My suggestion would be to limit the time to just 10-20 minutes.
When you have multiple responses, end the meeting. Then take the best ideas and create a simple, coherent vision statement for the group. If you're of my generation, think of The Breakfast Club at the last minute. Each different group of detainees received information about the process. Your team will move closer to the vision faster if they help create it.
This can be a very helpful exercise in building a strong foundation for your organization. It can also be a good educational experience for the leader. (You might find out things about your team members that you didn't know.)
By the way, if you are looking for a model for apersonal vision statement, Click here. We have a separate blog post for this type of vision statement.
Formulate your vision as concretely as possible.
When I look at most vision statements, I think... "cute". Most simply don't have much substance. As a result, they are also unlikely to convince anyone to take action. So when you create your vision, you want the statement to be detailed and results-oriented. Measurable goals are easier to achieve.
For example, this is Amazon's vision: “Our vision is to be the most customer-centric company in the world; to create a place where people can search and discover anything they want to buy online.”
I know what you're thinking... "Of course, with all the success Amazon has had, it's easy for them to think big." Yet that was the vision Jeff Bezos had in 1997 when Amazon went public. This vision came about when they were only selling books online and trying to compete with Barnes & Noble.
In archery, if you aim for the target and miss, you miss the target. However, if you aim at the target and miss, you will still hit the target. So avoid vague superlatives. Most vision (and mission) statements use words like "market leader" or "deliver quality products". By the way, here is one of the worst examples. "To be the world leader in customer value." If you read it, you can't tell what industry the company is in. (By the way, they are great engines).
Here are some of my favorite examples of vision statements:
- Land O'Lakes Vision: Our vision is to be one of the best food and agriculture companies in the world: being our customers' first choice; The first choice of our employees; Responsible with our landlords; and a leader in our communities.
- Microsoft (in the beginning): a computer on every desk and in every home.
- LinkedIn: Creates economic opportunity for all members of the global workforce.
Then create a list of values that differentiate your organization from other organizations.
Just like your vision statement, you can get more value (no pun intended) from this part by involving your team. Of all the mission, vision, and values components, this one is the most critical to a company's success. This list of values (value statement) drives activity within the organization. If the list of values is comprehensive and disseminated within the organization, it will create a more welcoming environment. This list of core values becomes the brand promise for both customers and your team members. They also develop an organizational culture of teamwork and camaraderie.
I only recently learned how important this written list of values is. Years ago, my team and I came up with a list of five values that set us apart from our competitors. (By the way, if you want to check them out, they're listed atValores do Leader's Institute®.)
At the top of our list is responsiveness. Since the company's inception, we've recognized that when potential customers have a problem, they want an immediate solution. The second was quality. Honestly, we charge a premium price for our services. Therefore, our customers expect the highest quality. You expect perfection. The third was collaboration. Our customers want the process to be easy. The last two are initiative and continuous improvement. Our team members must be able to resolve issues without slowing down the resolution process. Furthermore, we know that no matter how good we are today, if we don't improve processes, we will be left behind.
These high standards help us achieve common goals as a team.
Creating this list of values has paid off enormously.
A few years ago, we set ourselves an ambitious growth target. We wanted to quadruple sales in less than five years. Once I established my goal, it quickly became clear to me. Some of my team members must significantly contribute to growth. Others, on the other hand, can interfere with the growth process. I also knew that we would need to bring a significant number of new team members on the way to the finish line.
So my two top leaders and I created a little worksheet with the five core values listed on it. Then we add the names of all our team members. Finally, we gave everyone a score based on how we perceived each team member in each area. For example, my initiative score was 10 out of 10. On the surface, taking initiative is my forte. However, I got 3 out of 10 points for the cooperation. (Not my strength.)
We did this for each team member. We quickly realized that some of our hiring decisions could have hurt growth. On the spur of the moment, we needed trained personnel. So when we found people with the necessary skills who would work for what we would pay, we hired them. We don't do that anymore. Now, let's first look at how each candidate rates each of our core values. It helped us make better hiring decisions.
Here is a list of possible values to use as a starting point.
This list is incomplete. It's there to give you some ideas. By the way, your core values don't have to be just empty words. It's really fun to look at Google's core values. They created ten core values. Here are some. "Fast is better than slow." "You can be serious without a suit." "Great just isn't good enough."
Now that you have a great vision and core values, the mission statement is much easier to create.
Years ago, a local packaging company hired me to help them rebuild their mission statement. The founder and president retired. The first task he gave the new president was to update the company's mission. The exercise was instructive. Originally, the statement began "We are a corrugated board company that..."
In fact, throughout the morning, the team explained the company's tasks to me in detail. Turns out the purpose of their existence is related to the boxes, but their customers really didn't want the boxes. They wanted the results the boxes gave them. Customers were looking for ways to ship their products from one location to another with little or no damage. When they realized this, a whole new world of possibilities opened up.
Your salespeople were no longer just talking to customers about how to increase the number of cases per order. Conversations revolved around ways they could help customers better protect their inventory.
Your mission is not what you do. Your mission is the outcome you help shape for your clients.
We have a number of different companies under the banner of The Leaders Institute®. For example, our Fearless Presentations ® group offers training in presentation skills. However, our mission is not something vague like "We provide world-class public speaking courses". Instead, we focus on the outcome. "We help people overcome their fear of public speaking in just a few days."
The difference between a mission statement and a mission statement is that we ACTUALLY help people overcome their fear of public speaking. That's why we are known around the world.
At our team building company, our mission is not to "offer the best team building activities". Instead, "we help our customers make meetings more fun and valuable."
So when creating your mission statement, first take a look at your vision and value statement. Then ask yourself, “How exactly do we do this? What result do our customers get?”
The answer is not your product or service. However, this result is probably a great guide for you!
Examples of mission statements
The mission statements for each of these organizations clearly explain what they do. If you wish, you can use this as a template for your own company mission statement.
- National Geography- We support a diverse international community of changemakers, National Geographic Explorers, who use the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to illuminate and protect the wonders of our world.
- Lose- Slack brings all your team communications together, giving everyone a common workspace where conversations are organized and accessible.
- MailChimpName- Send better emails. We help millions of clients find their audience, engage their customers and build their brands.
- Spotify- Our mission is to unleash the potential of human creativity, empower one million creative artists to make a living from their art, and empower billions of fans to enjoy and be inspired by it.
- Swarovski– Swarovski brings sparkle to everyday life with high-quality products and services that exceed our customers' desires. We inspire our peers with innovation and reward their achievements as we strive to expand our market leadership.
You can find more corporate mission statements at101 awesome mission statements.
Use the template below to create a mission and vision statement and a list of your core values.
Use the vision, mission and values template below to create an inspirational statement explaining your organization's purpose. Start with an effective vision. Then use the drop-down lists to create value statements for your organization. In the end, focus on the organization's mission. (This will be easier.)
Mission statement: We strive to offer our customers the lowest possible prices, the best available selection, and the utmost convenience. Vision statement: To be Earth's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.What are the basic questions that answer the vision and mission statement? ›
- Why are you in business? ...
- Who are your customers? ...
- What image of your business do you want to convey? ...
- What is the nature of your products and services? ...
- What level of service do you provide?
“My vision is to be an honest, empathetic and impactful project leader and to be recognized internationally within my industry. I am committed to growing as a leader and delivering value-added projects to the end users. My mission is to create and lead a dream team where everyone is playing to their strengths.”Which is an example of a values statement? ›
What's a value statement? A company's values are the core principles that help guide it toward its vision and help it complete its mission. For example, a company that sees itself going carbon negative within 10 years may embody the values of sustainability and community.What is a good mission example? ›
Example mission statement: We empower individuals to save money while saving the planet by intersecting creative, sustainable packaging with wearable technology that educates, inspires, and drives Earth-friendly action. Example vision statement: To change the way we think about saving the planet.How do I write my own mission statement? ›
- Step 1: Identify Past Successes. Spend some time identifying four or five examples where you have had personal success in recent years. ...
- Step 2: Identify Core Values. ...
- Step 3: Identify Contributions. ...
- Step 4: Identify Goals. ...
- Step 5: Write Mission Statement.
- INTEGRITY. Know and do what is right. Learn more.
- RESPECT. Treating others the way you want to be treated. Learn more.
- RESPONSIBILITY. Embrace opportunities to contribute. Learn more.
- SPORTSMANSHIP. Bring your best to all competition. Learn more.
- SERVANT LEADERSHIP. Serve the common good. Learn more.
Here are four essential questions your company's mission statement must answer:
- What do we do?
- How do we do it?
- Whom do we do it for?
- What value are we bringing?
The definition of a mission statement is a concise description of your organization's core purpose, answering the question, “why do we exist?”. A mission needs to boldly state why you exist, and why you do what you do.What are the 3 key things a mission statement should have? ›
Typically, a mission statement includes a basic description of the company, its purpose, and its goals.
A good answer to a question about your mission statement could sound like this: My personal mission statement is to continue to learn and grow in my abilities, utilizing my skills, training and personal character to thrive in any position I hold, while striving to advance in the company and contribute to its success.What is a good mission and vision statement? ›
A Mission Statement is a definition of the company's business, who it serves, what it does, its objectives, and its approach to reaching those objectives. A Vision Statement is a description of the desired future state of the company. An effective vision inspires the team, showing them how success will look and feel.How do I create a vision and mission statement for myself? ›
- Step 1 Define what you want to be and do. ...
- Step 2 Identify an Influential Person. ...
- Step 3 Define your Life Roles. ...
- Step 3 Define your Life Roles (continued)
- Step 4 Write a Draft of your Personal Mission.
What are examples of values? Examples of values include honesty, integrity, kindness, generosity, courage, and confidence. These values help individuals determine what is desirable or undesirable for them.What are some good value statements? ›
- Put clients first.
- Act with integrity.
- Approach every day with curiosity.
- Embrace an ownership mentality.
- Build for durability.
- Appreciate the journey.
- Think of the most meaningful moments in your life. What made them meaningful to you? ...
- Think of the moments you felt the least satisfied. ...
- Pay attention to what stories inspire you. ...
- Figure out what makes you angry. ...
- Imagine your ideal world. ...
- Review the accomplishments you're most proud of.
“Our vision is to create a better everyday life for many people.” That's aspirational, short and to the point. More than that, it sets the tone for the company and makes it clear that they're in the market to offer low-priced good furnishings that suit everyone's lifestyle.What is a strong mission statement? ›
A good business mission statement should be between one and three sentences and never exceeds 100 words. This means they're a little longer than most company slogans, but they're still short, catchy, action-focused statements that encapsulate what your business does and what its values are.What is a positive mission statement? ›
Simply put, a good mission statement declares what you do currently, and a good vision statement is future oriented, detailing your aspirations and defining what you want your business to look like in the future.How do you answer a mission statement? ›
- Brainstorm what's most important to you. ...
- Evaluate how a specific role can help you meet your goals. ...
- Condense your ideas into a sentence or two. ...
- Be prepared to answer questions about your personal statement.
For example, a coffee company's general purpose would be to sell coffee, but its specific purpose as it relates to its mission should distinguish it from competitors, such as fostering an appreciation for coffee and the people who grow them.What is a simple mission statement? ›
A mission statement is used by a company to explain, in simple and concise terms, its purpose(s) for being. It is usually one sentence or a short paragraph, explaining a company's culture, values, and ethics.What are 4 important values? ›
In this lesson, we will look at six of these core values: liberty, self-government, equality, individualism, diversity, and unity.What are the six important values? ›
- Social justice.
- Dignity and worth of the person.
- Importance of human relationships.
What is the difference between a mission, vision and values statement? Mission statements describe an organization's reason for existence, vision statements describe the ideal state that the organization wants to achieve, and values statements list the principles that guide and direct the organization and its culture.What comes first mission vision or values? ›
Leaders often need to revisit the mission, vision and values of an organization. Often this is done in that order -- mission, vision, then values -- the theory being that values should support the vision, so you need to know the vision first.What is your value statement? ›
The term “value statement” is pretty self-explanatory. It's a message which conveys the values and priorities of the company, organization or team it represents. This lets your customers and staff know what's important to your business and the kind of culture it has.What is most important mission vision and core values? ›
Mission is the building block and vision is the fuel that drives you forward. Your core values are what keep you on track. Without adhering to a set of values, an organization runs the risk of falling apart.How do you write a vision example? ›
20 examples of inspiring vision statements
Amazon: “Our vision is to be earth's most customer-centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online.”
“My vision is to be an honest, empathetic and impactful project leader and to be recognized internationally within my industry. I am committed to growing as a leader and delivering value-added projects to the end users. My mission is to create and lead a dream team where everyone is playing to their strengths.”What is your vision sample answer? ›
My personal vision is to have a life of meaning for myself and others. It is important to me to live my life in a way that shows kindness, care, and concern for family and friends and even strangers.What 3 things should a good mission statement have? ›
Here are four essential questions your company's mission statement must answer:
- What do we do?
- How do we do it?
- Whom do we do it for?
- What value are we bringing?
What are core values? Core values are an individual or organization's fundamental beliefs and highest priorities that drive their behavior. You can think of core values as an internal compass of principles that drive a person's or organization's decisions.How do you write core values? ›
- Brainstorm values.
- Group and eliminate.
- Distill core elements.
- Draft a statement.
- Finalize core values.
- Communicate the statement.
- Live the values.