How to Write a Mission Statement & Mission Statement Examples

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Write a Mission Statement in 3 Easy Steps With Examples

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They have a mission statement. Image (c) Geri Lavrov / Getty Images

As I say in my mission statement definition, the mission statement articulates a company's purpose. It announces to the world at large why your company exists.

So you can think of a mission statement as a combination of what your company does and how and why it does it, expressed in a way that encapsulates the values that are important to you. Here's how to write a mission statement in three easy steps with some mission statement examples.

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Step 1 - Describe what your company does.

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Image (c) Robert Nicholas / Getty Images

No need to be fancy here. Just say it, for the moment. Whatever it is your business produces or provides is your business's purpose.

My company's purpose is to:

  • sell shoes
  • provide educational services
  • grow market vegetables
  • design phone apps 
  • provide financial advice
  • sell women's clothing
  • provide pet sitting services

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Step 2 - Describe how your company does what it does.

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Image (c) Tuomas Kujansuu / Getty Images

This is the tricky part, because we're not looking for a detailed description of your business's physical operations here; we're looking for a description of how your business operates generally. For most people, this means incorporating one or more of your core values into your description.

So take a moment to think of/list the core values that are important to you that are expressed in your business. Here are some sample values that might be important to you and the way you do business that you may want to use when you write a mission statement:

Sample Values

It might be helpful to focus on your business's core competencies when you're considering which values are worthy of being a part of your mission statement. Once you've decided which core values are most important, add one (or two at the most) to your description of what your company does.

Mission Statement Examples

Here's what the first three example companies used in Step 1 of how to write a mission statement might look like when you add values to them. 

My company's purpose is to:

  • Sell shoes of the highest quality.
  • Provide educational services that allow all children to experience learning success.
  • Grow market vegetables using organic, sustainable farming practices.

Remember, these are not done yet. There's one step to go before your mission statement is complete.

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Step 3 - Add why (your company does what it does).

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Image (c) Azul Images / Getty Images

When you write a mission statement, this is the part that describes your spark, or the passion behind your business.

Why does your business do what it does? For some people, it helps to think back on why they started their business in the first place.

Mission Statement Examples

This is what our three mission statement examples might look like when you add "why" to them: 

My company's purpose is to:

  • Sell shoes of the highest quality so every customer can find a pair of shoes they actually love to wear.
  • Provide educational services that allow all children to experience learning success and become life-long learners and contributing members of our community.
  • Grow market vegetables using organic, sustainable farming practices to give people safe and healthy food choices.

When you're finished, have another look at your mission statement and see if it says what you want to say or if there's a better way of phrasing it. Be sure to change the phrase "my company's purpose" to the name of your company.

For example:

"My company's purpose is to grow market vegetables using organic, sustainable farming practices to give people safe and healthy food choices",

might be rephrased to produce this finished mission statement:

"At Earth's Bounty, we grow market vegetables in a way that's good for the earth and good for the table".

And another example:

"Our company's purpose is to provide educational services that allow all children to experience learning success and become life-long learners and contributing members of our community"

could be better phrased as:

"Our company, Hopscotch Learning, exists to provide educational services that allow children to experience success in learning and success in life."

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Put your new mission statement to work.

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Image (c) James Brey / Getty Images

Once you've crafted your business's new mission statement, you'll want to put it to work right away.

Besides directing your business planning, you want your mission statement to be front and center in the minds of everyone who works in your business and communicated to customers and/or clients. As the statement of why you exist, it's also the statement that explains to them why they would want to do business with you.

Some businesses go so far as to make their mission statements the themes of their advertising campaigns. If you do nothing else, you should make sure your mission statement is highly visible in your business premises, on your website if you have one, and on all your marketing materials.

A good mission statement isn't just a slogan, it's an operations manual and it can't provide the guidance it's intended to provide if people aren't familiar with it.

Besides having mission statements to communicate who they are and what they do, successful small businesses also have vision statements to describe their ultimate achievements. How to Write a Vision Statement will lead you through the process of creating a vision statement of your own.