Nearly every business holds a mission and vision for their business. Even if not engraved on a gold plaque—or even jotted down on a sticky note—they usually contemplate the big questions like, what value is the company adding for clients or customers or the world? And, where does the business fit into the big picture?
Because the differences between a mission statement and a vision statement may initially appear subtle, AMJ clients sometimes use the terms interchangeably. But they are not the same thing at all. Mission and vision statements serve different, and equally meaningful, purposes.
So why is it important to articulate and circulate your mission and vision statements? It might first help to understand what each of these statements is, and how the two differ.
A Mission Statement articulates purpose and values, illustrating how the company, organization, or brand wants to change the world. It’s a company’s driving force, its raison d’etre. It’s meant both as an internal and an external document that aligns employees and inspires customers and investors. It can be a powerful marketing message when used on your business’ website, or a simple reminder to your teams of why what you’re doing is important.
A Vision Statement is aspirational and describes where a company wants to go and how it wants to grow. Think: hopes and dreams, lofty messaging, and the big-picture. A vision statement is future-focused and inspirational in language and tone. But, unlike a mission statement that can be both inward and outward-facing, a vision statement is generally meant only for your team only.
A Mission Statement and a Vision Statement are both vital to directing the goals of your company, organization, or brand. Articulate them well, and you will have actionable goals for today and a clear pathway for the future.