Most companies and businesses have a mission statement.
You know—their reason for why it is they do what they do—the reasoning behind the start and ongoing work of their company in the first place.
Every time I go to a company or individual’s website now, one of the first things I do is check out to see what their mission is.
Google stands by the mission: “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Amazon is on mission: “To be Earth’s most customer-centric company where people can find and discover anything they want to buy online.”
Nordstroms’ philosophy (shoe department and all!): “In store or online, wherever new opportunities arise—Nordstrom works relentlessly to give customers the most compelling shopping experience possible. The one constant? John W. Nordstrom’s founding philosophy: offer the customer the best possible service, selection, quality and value.”
And one more, “my people”, Whole Foods: “Our motto—Whole Foods, Whole People, Whole Planet — emphasizes that our vision reaches beyond food retailing. In fact, our deepest purpose as an organization is helping support the health, well-being, and healing of both people — customers, Team Members, and business organizations in general — and the planet.”
And businesses aside, each and every single human on this planet has a personal mission that drives us—whether we realize it or not.
A purpose; a reason for existing; an objective.
I am a firm believer that (for many of us) our life experiences, trials and tribulations, our unique talents and/or our unique personal interests, shape us (and help us define our personal missions).
- Maybe you were diagnosed with Type I Diabetes at a young age, and today, your mission is to educate kids and parents on coping with the disease.
- Or perhaps you grew up dirt poor; you’re a first-generation college student; you’ve known what it’s like to live for months at a time with no electricity in your house because your parents couldn’t pay the bills. Today, your mission may be to impact the lives of inner city kids.
- You discovered self-confidence through physical fitness 10 years ago, and transformed your health and your lifestyle from apathetic, office-space desk jockey, couch potato, to now, a career that you LOVE, a life you’re excited about (daily!) and a fit body and mindset.
- You incurred an ACL injury back in highschool soccer, and through your rehab process, you were inspired to help others through physical therapy. You are now in school to do just that.
- You are a gifted artist—you’ve been painting since age 2. Your passion, and mission, is to do what it is you were made to do: PAINT.
The list is endless.
Painting…Coaching…Inspiring…Mentoring…Activism…Politics…Healthcare…Writing…Singing…Leading…Serving…Changing (the world)…Impacting…Creating…Establishing…Dreaming…etc.
We all have gifts, talents, passions, dreams, and experiences that shape our mission statements.
Soooo…what is YOURS? (at least at this season in your life ANYWAYS?).
My mission for my business THRIVE Wellness & Recovery is:
To empower individuals to live healthy, balanced lives, free from eating and body image issues, in order to do what you were meant to do in this life.
This is accomplished through our unique mind, body, soul approach, incorporating: real food nutrition, physical vitality, and an awakening to your greater purpose.
No worries if it does not come to you in an instant. Sometimes these things can take some thinking about.
However, if you need some inspiration…here are some mission statements NOT to model your own after.
In other words: The Worst Mission Statements Ever*. (*some inspired by this article here)
- No Clue. Avon’s mission is focused on five core aspirations the company continually strives to achieve, including values like belief, integrity, respect, trust and humility begins Avon’s mission statement. However, in the 250+ words of it’s mission page, you still have NO CLUE as to what it is they do…(Makeup?! Breast cancer fighting? Increasing shareholder value?)…Nope, no clue.
- False Advertising? McDonald’s mission states: “We promote choices. Real ingredients. Great taste. Transparency.” Along with a couple other value-centered statements, including: “We champion happy, healthy kids. Keep families together through Ronald McDonald House Charities. Commit to reducing our footprint. Using less energy. And recycling more” AND, “We create opportunity. Encourage diversity. Offer training. Facilitate teamwork. Reward achievement.” Anyone else find these hard to believe?
- Abandoning WHO They Are. By one read of Albertson’s mission statement, you still have no idea what it is they actually do (sell groceries): “To create a shopping experience that pleases our customers; a workplace that creates opportunities and a great working environment for our associates; and a business that achieves financial success.”
- Conflicted: What do we really do? Here’s the first sentence of Barnes & Noble’s mission statement: “Our mission is to operate the best specialty retail business in America, regardless of the product we sell.” Here’s the third sentence: “To say that our mission exists independent of the product we sell is to demean the importance and the distinction of being booksellers.” It’s probably better if your mission statement doesn’t contradict itself.
- Too cool for school. Slang or popular words today, ay as well be gone tomorrow. Sony tries to ‘synergize’ their mission with a word (synergy)-but this second sentence falls upon deaf ears. Just say what you do—no crazy vocabulary needed. “Sony is committed to developing a wide range of innovative products and multimedia services that challenge the way consumers access and enjoy digital entertainment. By ensuring synergy between businesses within the organization, Sony is constantly striving to create exciting new worlds of entertainment that can be experienced on a variety of different products.”
Now…reflect. Dig deep. And you write yours.