Mission, Vision, & Strategic Commitments

"A small body of spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history." - Mahatma Ghandi

What is a mission statement?

Your mission statement drives the company. It is what you do/the core of the business, and from it come the objectives and finally, what it takes to reach those objectives. It also shapes your company’s culture.

Mission statement questions look like:

  • What do we do?

  • Whom do we serve?

  • How do we serve them?

This trickle-down effect of a mission statement confirms its value at any company. Just by its definition, you can quickly see how a solid mission motivates a team to advance toward a common goal, because they started at the same place and they are working together to reach the same end-goal.

What is a vision statement?

Your vision statement gives the company direction. It is the future of the business, which then provides the purpose.

The vision statement is about what you want to become. It’s aspirational.

Vision statement questions look like:

  • What are our hopes and dreams?

  • What problem are we solving for the greater good?

  • Who and what are we inspiring to change?

The vision statement promotes growth, both internally and externally. A strong vision helps teams focus on what matters the most for their company. It also invites innovation. A purpose-driven company envisions success as a whole, because they know what success means for their company.

What is the difference between a vision and a mission?

The vision statement focuses on tomorrow and what the organization wants to become. The mission statement focuses on today and what the organization does. While companies commonly use mission and vision statements interchangeably, it’s important to have both. One doesn’t work without the other, because having purpose and meaning are critical

Examples of Mission and Vision Statements

Company: Tesla

Mission: To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

Vision: To create the most compelling car company of the 21st century by driving the world’s transition to electric vehicles.

Why it works: What better word than “accelerate” in a mission to serve as the driving force behind what Tesla does. While boldly stating “best in the century” reflects loftier dreams in the vision.

Company: Google

Mission: To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.

Vision: To provide access to the world’s information in one click.

Why it works: Google may seem complex, but its mission clarifies that organization and accessibility are what they offer. Their vision statement is about improving accessibility in the future “in one click.”

Company: Facebook

Mission: To give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.

Vision: People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.

Why it works: Facebook’s mission is focused on the community their platform promises. Their vision talks about why community matters, interweaving how they will “bring the world closer together” from the mission.

Mission Statements of Other Top Brands

  • Adidas — To be the best sports company in the world.

  • Coca-Cola — To refresh the world in mind, body and spirit; to inspire moments of optimism and happiness through our brands and actions; to create value and make a difference.

  • McDonald’s — Our aim is to provide a fun and safe environment where our customers can enjoy good food made with quality ingredients at affordable prices.

  • Microsoft — Our mission is to empower every person and organization on the planet to achieve more.

  • Nike — Bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. *If you have a body, you are an athlete.

  • Pepsi — Create more smiles with every sip and every bite.

  • Shopify — Making commerce better for everyone.

  • Southwest Airlines — The mission of Southwest Airlines is dedication to the highest quality of customer service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and company spirit.

  • Starbucks — To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time.

  • Target — To help all families discover the joy of everyday life.

  • Walt Disney Company — The mission of The Walt Disney Company is to entertain, inform and inspire people around the globe through the power of unparalleled storytelling, reflecting the iconic brands, creative minds and innovative technologies that make ours the world’s premier entertainment company.

Strategic Commitments

Decisions such as investment in new capacity or introduction of new products are examples of strategic commitment. Strategic commitments are decisions that have long-term impact and are difficult to reverse. These decisions are different from tactical decisions, which have a short-term impact and are easier to reverse. Strategic commitments influence the nature of competition in the industry and competitive dynamics evolve over time. In order to be effective a commitment must be visible, understandable and credible. In a school, Strategic Commitments guide the process and cycle of continuous improvement for the organization and can be a reference used to make all decisions.

“Your mission statement, vision statement, core values, and service standards provide a clear focus for all while keeping your team humble and hungry. It creates that family environment in which your employees enjoy coming to work and dealing with the challenges they face each day.”

― Amber Hurdle, The Bombshell Business Woman: How to Become a Bold, Brave, and Successful Female Entrepreneur