Your Mission Statement Is a Snapshot of Your Organization

“That sounds like a great organization. What exactly is it that you do?” Ever faced that question with a deer-in-the-headlights look?  Whether a non-profit, school, business, church, or individual, you need a good mission statement. A purpose, a reason for the work you do.

There are several good reasons to have your mission statement in writing:

Non-Profit Mission Statement | Adeo Development Solutions

  • A mission gives you definition and purpose. If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll never know when you get there.
  • Everyone on the team can understand the focus and work in the same direction.
  • When your mission is defined, you can share it with others.
  • The mission can be included on your marketing
  • If you expect community support, people want to know what they are supporting.

So we need a mission statement. Great. How do we write one?

This is one way to go about writing your mission statement:

  1. Start with an old-fashioned brainstorming session. Gather your team and talk through what you’re about. Write down everything that comes to mind – you can weed through it later.
  2. Ask yourselves, “Why does this organization exist?” Then look at your brainstorming list and underline the key words or phrases that define what you’re about.
  3. Start forming sentences and read them aloud to see which ones flow well and get the message across. Weed out the riff-raff – redundant words, unnecessary phrases, complicated concepts.
  4. Keep it simple. You don’t need a long, complicated paragraph that no one will read. A short, simple statement that conveys your message is powerful. Make it memorable.

Ok, we have our mission statement on paper. Now what?

Tips to implement a mission statement:

  • Include the mission statement on every meeting agenda. Read it aloud at each meeting.
  • Post the mission statement in your building or office.
  • Use the mission statement on your marketing materials –brochures, website, press release, Facebook page, etc.
  • Revisit your mission statement at least once a year. Is it still relevant? Does it reflect the work you are doing? If not, something needs to change – either your work is off track or your mission needs revised. A mission statement is not set in stone – it can change over time. Just as your organization will grow and change, your mission needs to adapt as well.

Now that you have your mission statement, go. Live it.

How about you – what are some other ways you have found to implement a strong mission statement?

Why Are We Here? Developing an Effective Mission Statement
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