How To Write an Effective Mission Statement (With Examples)
Updated February 3, 2023
A mission statement is a one-sentence summary of what a company does and what positive impact it aims to have. Companies may use one to outline their objectives and values so their audience gains a better understanding of the business. Understanding what to include in this statement can help a brand attract new customers and grow its client base.
In this article, we outline the importance of a mission statement, describe how to write one, list tips for writing an effective one and provide a template and examples.
Why is a mission statement important?
A mission statement is important because it outlines a company's objectives, what it wants to accomplish and why its efforts matter. It also provides employees with a set of moral guidelines to abide by and gives the public a greater understanding of the company's goals, values and purpose. Here's an overview of each of the key elements included in a mission statement:
Goals: By defining company goals, a mission statement helps to unify an organization, providing employees with a roadmap for achieving company success. This provides a better structure and can promote a more efficient workplace overall.
Values: Mission statements also help define a company's culture, ethics and core values, which provide insight into a company's standards and morals. It also lets the public know what type of behavior they can expect from the company.
Purpose: Mission statements let others know the company's contribution to the greater public and its reason for existing. It gives companies an opportunity to explain why they do certain things, too. This element helps the company's audience better understand what sets it apart from other organizations.
How to write a mission statement
When you write a mission statement, it's important to make it clear and concise and address all the key elements. Here are steps for writing an effective mission statement:
1. Define the company's purpose
Start by stating the reason for the company's existence. For example, a retail store's purpose may be to sell shoes and apparel to customers. Besides listing the company's purpose, it's important for a mission statement to emphasize how it differs from industry competitors. Accomplish this by outlining the company's specialty, which allows customers to see its contribution to society.
For example, a retail store's purpose may be to sell shoes and apparel to children using solely organic fabrics and textiles that are good for the environment. When customers know how it's distinct from its competitors, it can help them decide which company they want to purchase from and which products interest them.
2. State how the company accomplishes its goals
Express how the company accomplishes its tasks by outlining its general operations. This typically includes listing the company's core values and beliefs. Some examples of company values include providing equal access to resources or offering superior products to its customers. For example, a vegetable company may provide customers with organic vegetables by using sustainable farming practices and growing them from their own family-owned farms.
3. Consider the reason for the company's actions
A mission statement can also include the company's passion and the reasons they do certain things. If you're writing a mission statement for a company that may have become misaligned with its initial motivations, start by considering the company's purpose and the reason for its creation. For example, if you're writing a mission statement for a produce company, the reason for its actions may be to promote a healthier quality of living and offer customers fresh, high-quality food products. This is the company's intended positive impact and the reason it provides organic vegetables to its customers.
4. Review and revise the mission statement
After completing a draft of the mission statement, it's important to read it aloud and check for grammar and spelling errors. Depending on the quality of your first draft, you may want to reword it for further clarity to ensure it's easy for the brand's audience to understand. It's also important to revisit the company's mission statement to ensure it's still true over time. This is because a company may have achieved its previous goals, or the company culture may have shifted.
Tips for writing a mission statement
Here are some tips can help you create a clear and effective mission statement that accurately portrays your company:
Be concise. Aim to keep your mission statement below 100 words to quickly present your company. Use direct statements and strong action verbs to emphasize the impact your organization wants to have.
Think long term. Make sure your mission statement is inclusive of the company's future. Though the company culture or goals may change over time, ensure your current mission statement reflects its long-term goals.
Get feedback. Consider asking other employees about your mission statement. Their opinion can help you improve it or provide you with insight you hadn't previously considered.
Mission statement template
Here's a mission statement template:
[Company's purpose] [How the company does what it does] [Reason behind the company's actions].
Mission statement example
When you write a mission statement, consider its structure and your choice of words. Referring to examples can help you create a quality mission statement. Here are some examples to consider:
Here's an example of a mission statement for a clothing company:
To offer stylish clothing at an affordable price by using local designers who are paving the way for ethically sourced apparel.
Here's an example of a mission statement for a beverage company:
To provide customers of all ages with a healthy and organic beverage through the use of advanced harvesting techniques.
Here's an example of a mission statement for an airline company:
To provide superior customer service by engaging customers with a positive attitude that showcases our company spirit.
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