What Makes a Good Mission Statement?

Organizations need a mission statement. It doesn’t matter if it’s a for-profit or non-profit, the existence of a mission statement is crucial as it summarizes the purpose of the organization.


A well-crafted mission statement tells the world why your organization exists in the first place. For businesses, the mission statement also lets people know what makes them different from competitors. This is important from the branding standpoint. After all, if your business is exactly like everyone else’s then why should people bother doing business with you?


What Makes an Effective Mission Statement?

Of course, you can write the mission statement as simple as “Making as much money as possible” or “Avoiding bankruptcy”, but they’re hardly inspiring, aren’t they?


So, what makes a good mission statement?

#1. Concise

A concise mission statement is better than a longer one. For example, the mission statement of Alibaba Group is “To make it easy to do business anywhere.” That’s it. There’s no long-winding mumbo jumbo there. If you ask new employees to remember that statement, they can remember it in under a minute. There’s less chance of a typo too.


#2. Focuses on the goal

Notice how Alibaba’s mission statement is not about what they are but what they want to do? That’s what you should copy. Start your statement with To + Verb. It’s a classic formula to write a powerful mission statement. It lets the world know what your company is doing in the present and what it wants to do in the future.


#3. Free from clichés and jargons

To write a BS-free mission statement just like the example above, please avoid these meaningless jargons:

– core competency

– empower

– corporate values

– leverage

– robust

– impact

– reach out

– paradigm

– the next level


OK, now that you know what makes a good mission statement, it’s time to round up your team and concoct the real thing.


Yes, even if you’re the owner of the business, the creation of the mission statement should be a joint effort. When your team has a say in it, they will internalize the values better and has a stronger commitment to fulfill the goal stated.


Remember that having the statement in place is not enough. You need to live it every day. Make sure everyone’s actions in the company align with the mission statement. That’s how the magic starts.