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Is Your Mission Statement Dying on Your Wall?

Posted on Categories Organizational Change/Alignment, Purpose, Savage ThinkingTags

Having a mission statement is more than a declaration of a company’s intent. A mission statement should be memorable, invoke inspiration, and call the audience to action. But having a mission statement and living it are entirely separate things.

If you’re ready to get your Mission working for you, then it’s time to rethink your approach. Think of your mission not as a single statement but as part of a collection of “books” – we call this FOCUS. The beginning of the bookshelf starts with Purpose followed by Mission, Vision, Values, and Behaviors.


Here are our definitions to keep you in FOCUS:

Purpose: why anyone would choose to associate with your brand

Mission: how you differentiate through the way your deliver on your Purpose every day

Vision: a vivid picture of where you are headed to motivate others to take the journey with you

Values: the unwavering principles necessary to infiltrate your culture with Purpose

Behaviors: who you demonstrate yourself to be through your actions

Having FOCUS helps link the behaviors you want to belief systems. It also encourages employee engagement. The number one reason employees choose to stay at a company comes from the desire to be a part of something they believe in. Employees strive to make a difference, and having FOCUS can help shed light on tangible ways they can live the mission.

Here are some findings from Gallup to put the urgency of the situation into perspective, Only:

  • 30% of employees feel engaged
  • 18% of employees trust their leader
  • 14% of employees know the company’s strategy

There’s an obvious disconnect between the average mission statement and employees. It’s not enough to craft a cleverly worded mission statement—your employees need to be invested in it and living it too.

But that is not enough. Your Purpose and priorities must be friends. Once you are living your Purpose and letting it shape the decisions your make, the rest will fall into place. Find that hard to believe? Companies devoted to a larger purpose than just maximizing profits outperformed S&P 500 firms 9:1. Purpose drives performance and performance drives profits.

It’s time to ask your self, “Is my company living its mission statement?”

Just let us know where you’d like to start. Need to assess if your entire management team knows what you stand for? We have five simple questions that will help you to evaluate and benchmark if everyone is on the same page.

Avatar photoAs President at Savage Brands, Bethany is known for forging powerful connections – connecting people to people and connecting companies with the fresh ideas that make their brands purposeful. In her recent book, "Get Your Head Out of Your Bottom Line and Build Your Brand on Purpose," Bethany conveys to business leaders the importance of leading with purpose.

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Want more? Contact us for a set of self-guided worksheets to help start your vision, priorities, and people alignment assessment.