“Your mission, should you choose to accept it…” Many people will climb mountains, swim rivers and cut through miles of red tape when they’re “on a mission”. Start-ups usually have a powerful purpose and strategic direction too, whether it’s to right a market wrong, or make the world a better/simpler/fun place. Yet too many established organisations fail to align their people to a common direction, because they can’t just state their common purpose. Instead they have a widely-acceptable mission statement.
Bernard Marr has a good post on LinkedIn about why most mission statements make us cringe, and how to avoid yours going the same way. Avoid meaningless, boring, long statements and anything that tells you more about the organisation than about the impact it will have. If the answer to ‘why are we here’ involves anything about improving operations or creating solutions then it’s time to start again.
The key take-away
It’s not about the mission statement, but about ensuring that your organisation is on a clear mission. A strategic purpose that will inspire, galvanise and align all the people associated with it. A reason to get up in the morning that is focused on the difference the organisation will make to others, not how it will do it. Once you’re clear about this overarching direction for your strategy, write it down in as few words as possible…
Direction – An NGB’s mission is one of the key foundations of the Direction section of the hpNGB model