How to Draft Your Company's Mission Statement (and Why It Matters)

Before you build your company, you need to draft your company's mission statement.

Have you considered what your company's mission statement is? Before you write a business plan, before you seek funding, and certainly before you start looking for customers, you should have one in mind. Though some definitions of what counts as a mission statement vary, it should always include a handful of features:

· Your company's purpose.

· The scope of your operations, including your market and/or location of operation.

· Your main differentiating qualities.

So why is a mission statement important, and how should you go about drafting one?

Mission and Branding

Your mission statement should be closely intertwined with your brand, the sum total of your company's characteristics, beliefs, and values. To insiders, your mission statement will serve as a reminder of who your company is and what you stand for, as well as how you should work together. To outsiders, it's the perfect, concise introduction to what your company is and how it operates. It's also a good way to make an impression with investors.

So where do you start?

Consider Your Goals

First, think about your goals. What are you really trying to accomplish? You might have an answer like "making lots of money" or "providing a future for yourself," but think about the company's trajectory. Do you want to make life better for a certain demographic? Do you want to change the way the world sees something?

Consider Your Audience

Next, think about the people who are going to be reading this (i.e., your customers and employees). What's going to stand out to them? How can you phrase your goals in a way that appeals to their interests and needs?

Consider Your Competition

Finally, consider scoping out your competition, all of whom should have mission statements of their own. You can use these as loose models or templates to work from if you choose, but more importantly, you'll need to see them so you can distinguish yours. You need to be unique in the field.

Writing a mission statement isn't as intimidating as it first may seem. Drawing from the right areas, you can come up with a single sentence that captures the essence and future of your company.

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