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Every company, without a distinction of its size, needs a mission statement as a source of direction for its employees, its customers, and its stockholders to let them know what it stands for and where it is headed (Abrahams, 2007).
"Mission is the purpose of an organization" (Robbins & Coulter, 2005. pp. 207). Abrahams
describes that, "A mission engenders a company with a sense of purposefulness by asserting the reason for its existence" (p. 60).
According to Mintzberg:
Mission describes the organization's basic function in society in terms of the product and service it produces for its clients.
Mission describes the organizational value system
Mission is not always written down.
Mission is reflected from mission statement.
2.1 Objectives / Advantages of Mission:
Robbins (1997) narrates following objectives of mission:
Mission provides direction for corporate decisions
Mission creates values (culture) to guide discretionary decision making
Mission replaces national or divisional cultures with a corporate culture
Mission communicates the nature of organization to outsiders
A vision is a view of the organization's future state. Corporate vision is defined in Lynch (2000) as 'a mental image of the possible and desirable future state of the organization'. Vision or mission statements for businesses are a concise summary defining the scope and broad aims of channels in the future, explaining how they will contribute to the organization and maintain customers and connections with partners (Robbins & Coulter,2005).
4- Difference between Mission and Vision:
Mission is about the here and now, whereas vision refers to the future.
Vision is always vague and fails to motivate, whereas mission is designed to motivate.
Vision, when achieved, might lose motivating power unless it can be reinvented whereas mission is organization's basic function and has great motivational power.
Mission of Beacon house School:
As an educational institute, a mission is to impart the best quality to the modern day standards.
Vision of Beacon house School:
By 2050, Beacon house School will be no. 1 educational institute of Pakistan.
6- Mission Statement:
A good mission statement identifies whom the firm will serve and how it will go about accomplishing its societal purpose. Jelassi and Enders (2008) asserted that developing a mission statement should provide definition of:
Business scope (where?). Markets including products, customer segments and geographies where the company wants to compete online.
Unique competencies (how?). A high-level view of how the company will position and differentiate itself in terms of e-business products or services.
Values (Why?). Less commonly include, this is an emotional element of the mission statement which can indicate what inspires the organization or its e-business initiative.
6-1 Components of Mission Statement:
Pearce and David (1987) discussed the nature and function of mission statements in organizational processes. They presented a framework of eight key components which serve as basis for research into mission statements. The components are:
Customers: Who are the organization's customers?
Products or services: What are the organization's major products or services?
Markets: Where does the organization compete geographically?
Technology: How technologically current is the organization?
Concern for survival growth, and profitability: Is the organization committed to growth and financial stability?
Philosophy: What are the organization's basic beliefs, values, aspirations, and ethical priorities?
Self-concept: What are the organization's major competitive advantage and core competencies?
Concern for public image: How responsive is the organization to societal and environmental concerns?
Concern for employees: Does the organization consider employees a valuable asset?
6-2 Benefits of Having a Mission and Vision Statement:
Robbins & Coulter (2005) stated that mission and vision statement:
Provides direction for corporate decisions
creates values (culture) to guide discretionary decision making
Replaces national or divisional cultures with a corporate culture
Communicates the nature of organization to outsiders
6-3 Writing a Mission Statement:
According to David & Fred (2003), when writing a mission statement few simple guidelines that can be followed:
The mission statement should be simple and to the point. It is a consensus among some researchers that it should be kept between 30 and 60 words, while others does not believe that it should be that brief. Some organizations have mission statements of only one sentence, whereas others have a paragraph. An example of a mission statement that is limited to one sentence is "As an educational institute, a mission is to impart the best quality to the modern day standards."
Each mission statement answers the following three questions: (1) What are the opportunities or needs the organization attends to? (2) What does the organization do to deal with those needs? And (3) what doctrine and values direct the organization? In other words, defining the organization's purpose, business and values.
It should be worldwide and simple to understand for all employees in the organization. It should be unique and identify the organization.
A mission statement is often what sets one company apart from the competition.
6-4 Examples of Mission Statements:
Following are some examples of mission statements given by Abrahams (2007):
Dell mission statement: Dell listens to customers and delivers innovative technology and services they trust and value.
eBay mission statement: eBay pioneers communities built on commerce, sustained by trust, and inspired by opportunity. eBay brings together millions of people every day on a local, national and international basis through an array of websites that focus on commerce, payments and communications
Google Vision statement: Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.
Wal-Mart: "To give ordinary folk the chance to buy the same thing as rich people."
3M: "To solve unsolved problems innovatively."
Walt Disney: "To make people happy."
Vision statements can also be used to define a longer-term, 2 to 5 year picture of how the channel will support the organization through defining strategic priorities (Karcher, (1997). The disadvantage with brief vision statements such as those shown above is that they can be general, so it is best to develop a more detailed vision or make them as specific as possible by:
Referencing key business strategy / industry issues and goals
Referencing aspects of online customer acquisition, conversion/experience and retention
Making memorable through acronyms or mnemonics, e.g. the 123 of our digital strategy, the 8Cs of our online value proposition
Linking through to objectives and strategies to achieve them through high-level goals
Abrahams (2007) explains that Dell expands on the simple vision as:
"Our core business strategy is built around our direct customer model, relevant technologies and solutions, and highly efficient manufacturing and logistics; and we are expanding that core strategy by adding new distribution channels to reach even more commercial customers and individual consumers around the world. Using this strategy, we strive to provide the best possible customer experience by offering superior value; high-quality, relevant technology; customized systems and services; superior service and support; and differentiated products and services that are easy to buy and use".
Dell has an excellent method of summarizing its vision
An example of a more detailed vision statement for a multi-channel retailer might from the Managing Digital Channels Best Practice Guide is:
"Our digital channels will make it easy for shoppers to find, compare and select products using a structured approach to merchandising and improving conversion to produce an experience rated as excellent by the majority of our customers".
6-5 How Mission And Vision Statements Are Communicated And Adopted By The Staff:
It is often helpful to allow company-wide participation when creating a mission statement. Commitment to the organization and a better understanding of the organization is the result of this "bottom up" approach (Karcher, 1997).
A "top down" approach can be effective in smaller organizations or even sole ownerships. Less time is required in creating a mission statement when it comes from the top. When the mission statement comes from upper management, employees are more comfortable. Care full decision is required whether to adopt a "top down" approach or a "bottom up" approach (Karcher, (1997).
6-6 Mission And Vision Statements Must Be Implemented Through Different Programs:
Employees from the whole organization can help to categorize the central values of the company. In order to encourage employee participation, many companies have offered competitions inviting employees to present suggestions. Cash prizes are sometimes provided as an incentive for inventive and motivating statements (Robbins & Coulter, 2005). Some companies invite customers to help in writing a mission statement because they can provide a sincere viewpoint. Another alternative is to get reviewed mission statements from other companies (David & Fred, 2003).
6-7 Challenges and Benefits of Mission and Vision Statements in A Climate of Constant Change:
Evaluation of the mission statement is necessary to make sure the organization is meeting its goals. If needed, new goals may have to be shaped in order to hold changes in the organization (Robbins & Coulter, 2005).
Radtke (1998) recounts mission statements are often difficult to evaluate because they are written in a somewhat abstract form. Mission and vision statements provide organizations a focus and a strategy for the future. According to Bart and Tabone (1998), they have become the foundations of organizations. They contribute to organizations' success and can guide the organizations to increases in output and performance.