Posts Tagged: purpose statement
What to do with all those business statements.
In any organization how you communicate what your business is all about is vital. Your employees and leadership must all be heading the same direction. There must be a cohesive understand of what you do as well as why you do it.
You could say, “we build widgets” or “we build the world’s best widgets” or “we build the most essential widgets the world needs to survive.” You can readily see there is a big difference between the ways each of those short sentences communicate.
Personally, I think developing a mission, vision and values statement are important in order for the owners and leaders of the organization to get clarity about where the business is, where it wants to go and how it’s going to get there.
Here’s a short description of each:
- Missions Statement is what we do in the present that will get us to the future.
- Visison statement is what future we want to accomplish through our present action
- Values statement is how we will behave now in order to get the desired future.
Let’s look at a the Coca-cola company and how they communicate each of these:
- To refresh the world…
- To inspire moments of optimism and happiness…
- To create value and make a difference.
- People: Be a great place to work where people are inspired to be the best they can be.
- Portfolio: Bring to the world a portfolio of quality beverage brands that anticipate and satisfy people’s desires and needs.
- Partners: Nurture a winning network of customers and suppliers, together we create mutual, enduring value.
- Planet: Be a responsible citizen that makes a difference by helping build and support sustainable communities.
- Profit: Maximize long-term return to shareowners while being mindful of our overall responsibilities.
- Productivity: Be a highly effective, lean and fast-moving organization.
- Leadership: The courage to shape a better future
- Collaboration: Leverage collective genius
- Integrity: Be real
- Accountability: If it is to be, it’s up to me
- Passion: Committed in heart and mind
- Diversity: As inclusive as our brands
- Quality: What we do, we do well
Let me clarify something quickly. There is a difference between ‘company values,’ and a ‘value statement.’ A value statement or purpose statement is what you do for your customer. It is in terms directed at the consumer. Values are a set of core traits that are the foundation to the internal culture of your business. Many companies call these ‘core values.’ For this post, we will talk about the core values. *(see the previous article to learn more about a purpose statement)
Coca-cola has a few more statements which are not necessary, but they felt they needed clarification. (If you want to see all of their statements: http://www.coca-colacompany.com/our-company/mission-vision-values/)
For most companies we can stick to the three basics. I want to walk thru how you can implement a core set of belief statements for your business.
- What do we do?
- What makes us different?
- What actions in the present get us to the future?
- Focus on ‘how’ you do your business.
- Where are we going?
- What will our business accomplish in 10 years?
- What impact will we have on our community, industry or the world?
- Focus on ‘where’ you are going in your business.
Values Statement (Core Values)
- How will we behave as a business?
- What attributes will be our moral compass?
- What character traits do we value in our employees and leadership?
- Focus on ‘culture’ within your business.
I wanted to share a bunch of examples, but I don’t want you to take someone else’s ideas and creating them for your business. It is important that you come up with a set of statement that works for your business. You should get a strong set of mission, vision and values before you research what other companies say. Then, your research should validate what you have discovered in your own business.
Remember, you are creating a cultural identity with these statement. You are communicating what is important to your company. It is best to put them into your words in your style. If your culture is fun, have fun with it. If you have a more structured business, make it structured, but don’t forget to inspire.
For more info
Everyone wants to have a deeper purpose to life. When we define that purpose, we begin to live in the reality of what we were created for. Imagine knowing exactly what you are supposed to be doing. Imagine knowing exactly why you are here on this earth. You can know these things if you look to the one who created you.
In business, there are many things that distract us. Sometimes we have to redirect our employees or our team. If you have a defined mission, values and purpose, your team will be strengthened. They will know where they need to goal. Howard Partridge says that leaders need to:
Effectively communicate a meaningful purpose that inspires.
Are you inspiring? Are you an effective communicator? Do you have meaningful purpose?
Mission is how we get where we are going. It is usually one sentence and defines what you are trying to accomplish each and every day. To define your mission, just ask yourself what do we deliver to our customers?
Your mission can be used to help make decisions. If your mission is to deliver great customer service and someone suggests a remodel of your waiting area, you know what to do.
Vision is what your business looks like. You define what kind of business you see for the future. It is a goal that you are striving towards. While mission may be ‘deliver valuable customer service’ your vision may expand that into quantifiable numbers. “Our vision is to deliver valuable customer service by having the best waiting area, attentive customer service ambassadors and the most polite workers in the industry.”
Values are standards we live by. Values help you live out your mission. These are principles that ring true in every department. You may think of things like integrity and outstanding customer service. Simple ask yourself, what do we really value?
You can find out what you value by the attitude of your workers. Look at what gets rewarded. Do your employees get a pat on the back for completing a task quicker than expected? You value speed. Do your employees get acknowledged for making customers happy? You value customer service. Do you encourage employees to have fun while they work? You value fun.
Purpose is the why behind what we do. Everything in business comes down to a single point: passion. Why do you do what you do? What drove you to create or become part of the business that you are in? There are motivating principles, but usually there is a story.
For instance, when I was younger, I wanted to be in business. I could not find anyone to mentor me, so I went at it alone. I found the struggles much harder and it took me longer to reach success. I decided that I wanted to give back and help other entrepreneurs. I wanted to help them with the help that I did not have. “Helping entrepreneurs’ is my why.
Creating a system is the goal. If you can define what we talked about on this blog, you can begin to lay the foundations to your system. Employees won’t have to call you for every decision if they know the values your company has.
When you create a system, you free yourself from your business and allow the business to grow. There is two ways of doing it. You can work ‘on’ your business. Or you can work ‘in’ your business. If you work on it, it runs when you are not there and you have a system in place.