Every organization has a mission, a purpose, a reason for being there. Often missions are constructed to explain briefly why the organization was first created. Most of the times, organization's purpose does not change if the problem they are trying to resolve is still out there, although how it does business might have probably evolved. On the other hand, 5, 10 or 20 years can change the landscape so significantly that the original mission must be updated, altered, or changed dramatically in order to address new realities and market needs.
A suitable mission statement should explain why your organization exists and what it aspires to achieve in the future. It explains the organization's essential nature, values, and its work.
This should be accomplished in a brief, easy understandable sentences free of jargon. In other words, it should avoid the terms of business that you may be in the habit of using with others who in the real estate field, but is unfamiliar to anyone who is outside the organization or the field in which it works.
Another significant aspect to consider is how your mission statement was reviewed and understood by the board or staff members. If your mission life span has come close to an end or passed, then now is probably a good time to review and, if necessary, fine-tune or even rewrite your mission statement with all the feedback and changes occurred during the last period. All too often an organization's mission statement, which has been handed down over the years, loses relevance and ceases to speak to the board members, the staff, or supporters.
An effective mission statement must resonate with the people working in and for the organization, as well as with the other different constituencies that the organization hopes to affect. It must express the organization's long going purpose in a way that inspires commitment, good ethics, loyalty, innovation, and courage.
For an effective mission statement, your organization's mission statement should answer three key questions:
- What are the opportunities or needs that the needs to address? (the purpose of the business)
- What are your people doing or should do to address these needs? (the business of the company)
- What principles or beliefs guide the company's daily work? (the values of the company)
You can start drafting a mission statement by creating one based on the above questions.
Ask staff, volunteers, and constituents to list any words, phrases, or ideas that come to mind with respect to the company and its business. Do not edit at this point. Give everyone a chance to be heard. Look for language and concepts that enjoy broad consensus and understanding.
Below we provide a sample of mission statements that addressed these questions. Check them out and see what they have in common.
- The mission of Company X is to create a positive difference in the lives of children, primarily through a professionally-supported, one-to-one relationship with a caring professional, and to assist in achieving utmost potential as they grow to become confident, competent, and caring individuals. By providing committed volunteers, national leadership and best standards and practices of excellence.
The purpose: to create a positive difference in the lives of children
The business: providing committed volunteers who have one-to-one relationships
The values: confident, competent, and caring; leadership and standards of excellence
- Organization Y, is a humanitarian organization dedicated to fighting bias, bigotry, and racism in the region. As it promotes understanding and respect among all, from different religions and cultures through advocacy, conflict resolution, and education.
The purpose: to fight bias, bigotry, and racism in the region
The business: advocacy, conflict resolution, and education
The values: promote understanding and respect among all, from different religions, and cultures
Your Mission Statement Should . . .
- convey your organization's purpose in a way that encourages support and ongoing commitment
- motivate those who are connected to the organization/company
- be articulated in a way that is convincing and easy to understand and remember
- use proactive verbs to describe what you do
- be free of jargon, use simple words
- short enough so that anyone in your organization can readily repeat it