Purpose is an integral part of building the foundation for your brand, as it defines what your business does and why it does it. Whether you’re just getting started or are a veteran, developing and refining your business mission statement — and living up to it — is crucial to your company’s success.
Of course, every business aims to generate revenue and profit. A mission statement goes beyond that. The Balance defines a mission statement as “a combination of what your company does and how and why it does it.” It’s not enough to say that your business’s mission is to sell a product; a mission statement will only be successful if it explains why selling your particular product matters. When your business is built upon a purposeful mission statement, it has an outline of guiding principles to follow.
The words comprising your business mission statement are more than just a saying on a page. Once you narrow down why your business does what it does, determine the impact that you want to have on your audience. Then, create profound, powerful change with your words. To develop your mission statement, begin by answering the following questions:
- What is the purpose of your business?
- Who does your business serve?
- What are your inherent values and beliefs?
- How can you impart your values and beliefs onto your business as a whole?
Create a short statement (between 1-3 sentences) that uses succinct language to capture the essence of your answers.
Every day, you make new business decisions. When those decisions derive from the foundation of your business mission statement, every choice will be easier to make. From operations to your brand voice, your mission statement aligns everything with a universal purpose. If you are ever faced with a particularly difficult decision, turn to your mission statement for answers. The right option will align with the values outlined within.
Mission statements help businesses streamline processes. Everything from hiring employees to determining the most engaging style for your WordPress.com website all connects via your business mission statement, which is the guiding light in your decision-making process.
Your mission statement doesn’t have to be grandiose. It can be short and sweet, while remaining impactful. A dry cleaner’s mission statement, for example, might be: Making laundry easier through affordable and accessible dry cleaning.
Be aware that if the same dry cleaner has drop-off locations in random, underpopulated areas throughout the city and doesn’t provide a full list of its locations, it’s not living up to the “accessible” part of its mission statement and is doing a disservice to shoppers. Alternatively, if the dry cleaner lists its locations on a user-friendly WordPress.com website with clear instructions to its local drop-off sites, it’s aligning with its mission statement and won’t mislead shoppers.
A well-crafted mission statement should improve a business’s offerings and drive it to serve the community in actionable ways. When shoppers know that a business aligns with their values and aims to positively affect their lives (as rooted in the mission statement), it fosters a pivotal “know-like-trust” factor that builds loyalty. Fans enjoy getting to know companies and what they stand for. Oftentimes, shoppers prefer to support businesses with values similar to their own. So, spend time crafting your mission statement, and ensure that it clearly defines your purpose and beliefs to attract supportive shoppers.