What’s Your Mission?


What’s your mission?  I am always surprised at the number of employees who have no idea of the mission of their company.  They often cite the fact that it is a statement that is largely meaningless or it is too long to remember.  When I hear that, I ask them, “What does your company do?  What do they sell or provide?”  That elicits a variety of answers depending on point of view.  Some people even chortle that it doesn’t matter, they just do their job.

Well, why does it matter?  Why does a mission matter?

If you are in a military unit, the mission is everything.  You must know what the coordinates are and what the expected outcome is.  From there you must be part of a plan to reach the objective.  Imagine going into battle with a simple, “Just go that way and shoot.”  Would you be inspired to go blindly forward?  Doesn’t it matter WHY you are doing it?

In business, many people seem to go blindly into battle without knowing why.  They go to work every day to fulfill tasks without a sense of the larger “why.”

Why am I concerned by this?

I am concerned because I think this leads to work becoming a series of boxes to check without inspiration and without creativity.  This all leads to a lousy experience for workers and an even lousier experience for customers.

If you are a leader in an organization, what is the mission?  What are you working so hard for?  Is it to help others or is it simply to check off boxes and get a paycheck?  If it is the latter, then your staff will do the same.  If you lead, come to terms with a mission, make it known, inspire others to participate in it and create a movement of people working hard for something meaningful like helping others or providing excellence in ________.

QUESTION: What are you leading people to?  Why is your business in business?  What is the mission?

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