Unit 1.8 - Mission Statements

Aims & Objectives
 “Whenever
I am
caught between
two evils, I take
the one I have
never tried.”
 Mae
West (1893- 1980)
Mission Statements
This is the attempt to condense the central purpose of a
business’s existence into one statement.
A statement of the business’s core aims, phrased in
a way to motivate employees and to stimulate
interest by outside groups.
Communication of mission statements is almost as
important as establishing them . There is little point in
establishing the central vision for a business – and then
not letting anyone else know about it.
In what ways do businesses communicate
their mission statements
What is a Mission Statement?
Its not specific and does not contain
performance measures.
 It’s a statement of fundamental purpose of
the organization so as to inspire those who
work for it.
 A vision of what the organization wants to
 Boundaries for the organization.
 Guidance for decision making.
 A statement of values to guide individual
 A statement of the character of the
organization and the customers it seeks to
Features of a Well Produced Mission
It outlines clearly the way ahead for the organization.
Identifies the business the organization will be in in the
Provides a definition of success.
Provides information and inspiration to their employees.
Provides a living statement that can be translated into
goals and objectives at each level of the organisation.
Note: Objectives which are specific and quantifiable are
designed to assist in the achievement of goals set out in
the mission statement.
– to bring inspiration and innovation to every
athlete in the world
– to enable people throughout the world to realize
their full potential
– exists because this fragile earth deserves a
– be better than Coke!
– Look up the mission statements of four other
business and share them with the class.
How Useful are Mission Statements?
They inform groups outside of the business
what the central aim and vision is.
They can provide motivation to employees
and help to guide and direct employee
individual behaviour at work.
They are not meant to be detailed working
objectives but they help to establish in the
eyes of other groups ‘what the business is
Criticisms of Mission Statements
Too vague and general so that they end up
saying little which is specific about the business
or its future plans.
Based on public relations exercise to make
stakeholder groups ‘feel good’ about the
Virtually impossible to really analyse or disagree
Often rather general, so it is common for two
completely different businesses to have very
similar mission statements.
Communicating the Mission Statement
Communicating the mission statement is almost
as important as establishing them. There is little
point in identifying the central vision of a
business- and then not letting anyone else know
about it.
 Businesses communicate their mission
statements in a number of ways:
– Published Accounts and other
communications to shareholders
– Internal company news letters and magazines may
draw their title from part of the mission statement.
– Advertising slogans or posters are frequently based
around themes of the mission statement.
Group Task
 Create
a mission statement for the
– American Standard Company (toilets)
– The Estee Lauder Company (cosmetics)
– Ford Motor Company (cars)
– IBM (computers)
– Levi Strauss and Co. (jeans)
– Walt Disney Co. (entertainment)
Mini Case Study
Case: Northern Foods
Source: Jones, Hall, Raffo, Business
Studies 3rd Edition, Unit 4, page 35.