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Victoria Munro of Make-it-FlyUnleash the Power of a Purposeful Mission Statement
By Victoria Munro

Printable version

Your company’s ultimate success will be determined by how well you define and live by your mission statement. Creating an effective mission statement for your business isn’t an easy task, but it is well worth the effort as it can become the guiding principle that will shape your company’s destiny.

In this two-part series, we’ll consider the importance of mission and vision statements, and offer practical suggestions on how to craft and use your distinctive statements to propel your business in the right direction.

A mission statement is the “what” of your business; a clear and precise definition of why your company exists, what you provide for clients and what is most important to you. It shouldn’t simply be a paragraph in the Executive Summary section of your business plan stored in the file cabinet. It is a relevant, compelling declaration of your company’s future. The right mission statement will energize, give meaning and direction, and inspire your entire team on a daily basis!

Your mission statement should:

Boldly state what you and your company are about
Require little or no explanation
Be clear and memorable
Be no more than one or two sentences

It sets your focus on success strategies and keeps you on track, carrying you through the tough times. It should be the plumb line that guides decision-making, and it creates a framework for setting meaningful and motivating goals. A good mission statement will both inspire passion and build a team spirit that encourages ownership and loyalty among employees, customers and vendors alike.

Creating Your Mission Statement:

The process of crafting a mission statement will demand time and effort as well as some serious soul searching, but you’ll be well rewarded!

You can create your mission statement on your own, but utilizing the creative power of a group will be much more productive. If you have employees, involve as many as feasible. This will stimulate multiple ideas and generate a sense of ownership. If your business is you, recruit trusted business associates, friends, family members and ‘raving fan’ clients to help you. They will provide insight into your strengths as well as offering different perspectives. Be sure to generously reward your team for their efforts.

The process will take several hours. Set a date and time for the event and provide a quiet, comfortable environment, with minimum distractions and ample refreshments. Make it fun!

Create and follow a clear agenda. If at all possible, assign someone else to lead the meeting. You’ll gain more by sitting back, observing the process and making your own contribution when appropriate. Directing a large group, keeping everyone on time and on track, can be challenging, so if possible, appoint an experienced facilitator. Use a flip chart to record all the ideas.

Start out by clarifying and documenting your beliefs – both as an individual and as a company. Then, identify your core values, your underlying philosophies – what is really important to you.

Possible Questions to Ask Yourself or Brainstorm with Your Team:

Why did you start this business?
What do you ultimately want to achieve in life and through this business?
Who are your ideal clients?
What is the ultimate benefit you provide for them?
What is unique about you or your company?
What image do you want to portray?

Hang all the flip chart pages around the room, displaying the groups’ notes, to encourage visual stimulation. Distill the information gathered and begin to craft your statement. Once the process is complete, and you have fashioned a powerful mission statement, tell the world! Post it everywhere. Weave it into every aspect of your business. Allow your mission statement to define and guide your company’s destiny and set your unique course for success!

(630 words)
© 2005-2007 Victoria Munro.

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About the Author: Victoria Munro is co-founder (along with husband Dave Block) of Make-it-Fly® LLC, a company dedicated to creating success for small-business owners through creatively designed programs and tools. Victoria has started and run nine different businesses. To receive FREE business success articles with tips to help you with your business, sign up for their award-winning ezine, “In-Flight Refueling,” at:, and receive a free copy of the eBook, Get More Done in Less Time: 101 Quick and Easy Time Tactics & Tips.

You’re welcome to “reprint” this article in your ezine, print publication or on your website, as long as it remains complete and unaltered (including the “about the author” info at the end). Please send a copy of your reprint to

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