A mission statement outlines a startup’s underlying motivation for being in business. It spells out the contribution to society that the organization aspires to make. The mission statement is not a strategic objective, but rather the basis on which the strategic objectives and strategic plan are developed. This ensures that the startup’s goals derive from the basis on which the company was founded.
Not everyone agrees with the value of a mission statement. And many companies do well enough without one. We believe that creating a mission statement is important for startups. A well-formulated mission statement can form the nucleus of the startup by identifying what unites the stakeholders (customers, shareholders and employees).
The mission statement appears at the first level in the hierarchy of company statements:
A mission statement serves as a guiding light for the company when creating the various company statements, although it is the least specific directive.
The mission statement describes a company’s objective, which is the first element in the company’s strategy statement. The objective is a definition of the ends that the mission (or strategy) is designed to achieve.
The elements of a mission statement may include:
A mission statement may be as brief as one sentence or several pages long. The following questions will help you frame a mission statement:
Kawasaki, G. (2004). The Art of the Start. London: Penguin Group. pp. 31-33.
Collis, D.J., and Rukstad, M.G. (2008, April). Can You Say What Your Strategy Is? Harvard Business Review, 1-10.
Aaker, D.A. (2001). Developing Business Strategies. New York: John Wiley & Sons. pp. 31-33.