In A Simple Statement: A Guide to Nonprofit Arts Management and Leadership, Jamie Grady writes what he's learned about mission statements over the years.
What Is a Mission Statement
the company's central philosphy, beliefs, values, and principles.
Keys to an Effective Mission Statement
- It should be recognizable, unique, exciting, and inspiring.
- It is a simple expression of why the organization was created and what it will accomplish.
- Individuals who are not familiar with the organization should be able to quickly and accurately understand its purpose by reading the mission statement.
- Mission statements should be powerful and compelling in order to bring people together to work toward a common goal. A compelling sense of purpose brings people together to achieve great goals.
- If an organization wants every action to be based upon its mission statement, it should create a statement that can be easily memorized.
- A mission statement needs to be brief in order for it to be easily placed in the minds of those who need it most - organizations, employees, patrons, donors, and vendors.
- As with any important declaration, it is vital to allow time for revision and discussion arbout the statement's appropriateness and effectiveness.
Group Process Over Single Person
The creation of the mission statement can be completed by one person or a core group. Usually the statement will be more effective, powerful, and embraced if it is formed by a small group of people rather than a single person. If the mission statement is developed through a successful group process, each member of that group will have a personal stake in the success of the mission and that of the organization. The more people working toward a focused purpose, and sharing that focus, the greater chance they will have in accomplishing that purpose.Key Take Aways
- The biggest thing for me here is that the mission statement acts as a guage for success.
- I'm a fan of simple, repeatable mission statements over elaborate or verbose ones.
- I like the point on getting skin in the game by using a group process for the mission statement.
- Man on a Mission - a blog dedicated to mission statements.