Mission Vision Values
Mission Vision Values
Starting a company is like setting sail on a homemade boat. You’re pretty sure it will float, but can it handle the open water? Indeed, there’s a vast metaphorical ship graveyard for all the companies that ventured into the high seas of the open market, only to be dashed on the rocks of poor planning.
As a branding and consulting agency, we often work with companies about to launch or merge. Whether it’s a maiden voyage or a fresh coat of paint on the hull, our first question for our clients is whether they have defined and implemented Mission, Vision, and Values statements (MVV). Without this crucial step, an organization is rudderless and vulnerable to the unpredictable currents of the marketplace.
An MVV endeavor establishes purpose (beyond profit), sets goals, and creates a framework for how a company conducts business and why they are in business in the first place. Whether you’re the captain of an organization or simply managing a short-term project, a well-defined and authentically embraced MVV can be vital to navigating in the right direction.
Here’s how we define the different aspects of the MVV:
- Mission Statement: Who are we? Where are we? A mission communicates an organization’s reason for being and defines its purpose. The Mission Statement distinguishes a company and how it serves its stakeholders.
- Vision Statement: Where are we going? A vision is a future-oriented declaration of aspirations. A vision statement informs strategy and should align with the purpose defined in the Mission Statement.
- Values: What principles guide us? Values express core beliefs regarding work culture, social issues, and general guidelines for doing business.
Rigging the MVV
We have become experts in helping companies develop their MVV. Our process involves bringing a cross-section of stakeholders on deck (leadership, employees, clients, investors) and creating custom discussion points to test the underlying seaworthiness of their venture. By challenging clients to think quickly and react emotionally (but with detailed reflection), we help them to reveal the true nature of their company culture — not just how the company sees itself or wants to be seen. The anonymous responses and the following conversations reveal the prevailing winds that a more thoroughly developed MVV can help harness.
But, while creating an MVV is a crucial first step, for the process to be worth its salt, you must lash together a company-wide connection to these ideals. So we help our clients devise strategies to integrate their MVV into everything from training and onboarding new crewmembers – to corporate communications (external and internal) and both administrative processes and procedures. An MVV acts as the chart and compass that guides a company’s culture and brand identity.
Navigating the MVV on Rocky Seas
A common attribute of companies with high performance and low turnover cultures is a clearly defined purpose. This should rise above day-to-day functions to show how and why an organization positively impacts the world.
A thoughtful, regularly reinforced MVV helps employees identify and articulate why they work for their company. The more the MVV is referenced and integrated into workplace culture, the more emotional buy-in stakeholders will have, resulting in a productive, creative, and loyal team sailing the company ship.
All Hands on Deck
Quality talent is a precious resource for every corporate schooner. But new crew members need more than the promise of buried bouillon to climb aboard. Like clients and investors, potential recruits care about a company’s mission and social values as much as the paycheck they will receive. A well-defined MVV will communicate your position and reassures potential team members that you’re charting a course toward a greater purpose.
Aye Aye, Captain
Another advantage of the MVV statement is its role in creating a sense of continuity when there is a change in leadership. Good companies should outlast their founders and not be tethered to any one captain. Integrating an authentic MVV into your organization keeps the ship upright, regardless of who’s at the helm.
An MVV can seem like a flagrant attempt to blow wind into the sails of morale or compliance. However, when an organization’s mission, vision, and values are developed with intention, created collectively, reinforced regularly, and evolved as needed, they become the rudder, wheel, and indispensable compass that points to success.