The Importance of Mission & Vision in Organizational Strategy

Regardless of whether you’re running a small one-person operation or a large corporation, having a company mission and vision help to provide employees with a purpose.

The mission and vision of an organization are integral to the company’s strategy because they are used to define future goals and operational tactics. While mission and vision are terms that are often interchanged, they actually refer to two separate aspects of the company.

Understanding Mission Statements

The mission statement of the organization outlines the company’s business, its goals and its strategy for reaching those goals. It focuses more on where the company is at the present time and the tactical steps it wants to use to achieve its objectives. The mission statement of a company can be used to shape the culture of the organization.

When establishing a mission statement for your company, outline what it is your business does, who you serve and how you serve them. Those are the three most critical elements of a business’ mission statement.

Understanding Vision Statements

While the mission statement focuses on more tactical aspects of the business, the vision statement looks to the future of the company. The vision statement provides the direction in the which the company wants to go. Together with the mission statement, it helps to create the organizational strategy for the business.

When drafting a vision statement for your business, answer questions about what your hopes and dreams are. What kind of future do you want to see, and how does the company play a part in making that happen? Are you aspiring to make some kind of change, and how will you make it?

What is the Purpose of Your Organization

If your goal is to harness the energy of every member of your organization to develop an effective, high performing enterprise, then you must develop and articulate your purpose and direction.

We believe this is one of the most important responsibilities of top management. It helps ensure that everyone is pulling in the same direction. It’s the first step toward high performance. In fact, we believe high performance is virtually impossible unless everyone knows where the organization is going.

The lack of a clear, purposeful destination generates nonproductive tension. Common sense tells us that a leader’s ambiguity cannot be translated into useful action. Eventually, the activities of any group working without shared objectives will degenerate into disorder and discord.  Resourceful leaders practice techniques that can raise and lower the tension that occurs naturally in the workplace, keeping it in the constructive, energizing range.

Elements of Organizational Vision

Best practice is to provide team members with purpose and direction. Successful leaders set organizational vision by:

  1. Creating a vision
  2. Developing a mission
  3. Executing with values

Here are the 7 Characteristics of a Vision Statement

  1. Provides a mental image of an extraordinary accomplishment the organization would like to achieve.
  2. Articulates the overreaching, long-term goals of the enterprise.
  3. Looks beyond the present to see what the future could be.
  4. Asserts what the organization can be at its best.
  5. Presents a target that beckons.
  6. Reflects, often times, what is unique about your organization.
  7. Is vivid, motivating, and memorable

Applying Mission and Vision Statements to Your Organizational Strategy

The mission and vision statements of a company help direct the organizational strategy. Both provide purpose and goals, which are necessary elements of a strategy. They outline the audience for the business, and what that audience finds important.

By identifying these elements, the business executives can develop a more step-by-step strategy that helps the company achieve its mission in the short term, and its vision in the long term.

Mission and vision statements help businesses to outline performance standards and metrics based on the goals they want to achieve. They also provide employees with a specific goal to attain, promoting efficiency and productivity.

Mission and vision statements aren’t only necessary for employees and business owners when it comes to the organizational strategy. They also apply to external stakeholders like customers, partners and suppliers.

The mission and vision statements can be used as a public-relations tools to attract media attention, engage specific audience segments and develop business partnerships with like-minded companies.

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