Developing a Team Mission Statement

There are several steps to developing a team mission statement, use them well and the process may not need to be so tortuous...

When you created your Vision Statement, you were setting out the direction in which you wanted to head. Now that you are developing a team mission statement, you are setting out how you will do it, and what makes you unique from all others.

As you are developing the mission statement consider each of these elements:


Here is an example Mission Statement that a team I worked with developed:


Distinctive Competence

Several people have asked me, "What do you mean by Distinctive Competence?" Distinctive competence is what sets you apart from your competitors.

It is the quality, or feature, of the organization which gives you, your unique advantage. For example, a company I worked at, our competitive advantage was our flexible, energized, innovative people.

The business's distinctive competence may be a function of:

  • the products and/or services offered or
  • a function of being a high/low-cost producer or
  • providing superior service
  • it's people

Identifying your distinctive competence is crucial. It enables the team to focus its energies and resources in a particular direction, and continuously build upon its strengths.

Your Mission Statement Should:

  • Be broad enough to allow flexibility in its implementation, but not so broad that there is a lack of focus
  • Provide a template for decision-making by employees at all levels
  • Reflect the values, beliefs, and philosophy of operations of the organization and reflect the organizational culture
  • Be clear and understandable to all
  • Be brief enough for most people to remember
  • Reflect the distinctive competence of the organization
  • Clearly indicate the scope and direction of the organization's activities
  • Address the organization's fundamental reason for existing

Hot Tip

Never See Your Team Mission Statement as Set in Concrete.

Business, organizational and world changes dictate that your primary reason for existence and your distinctive competency will change at some point. Your intent may not change, but the way in which you deliver your product and/or service may well do so.

For example:

An organization that manufactured horse-buggies in the 1800's will possibly have quite a different mission statement today, yet they are still in the business of creating transport solutions.

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