PEOPLE SUPPORT BELIEFS
When we look around the world we see cause after cause after cause. Viral videos about Kony and ALS and from brands like Dove saturate the Internet. Aspiring models want world peace. Why? Because, while someone might buy from you once or twice, people support beliefs.
What do you mean? Well, let me explain.
Have you ever seen anyone write their congressman about how great their new iPhone is? Have you ever seen anyone willingly donate ten times the value of Honey Nut Cheerios cereal because they love the taste so much? And I'm guessing that despite your best efforts your website video explaining what your business does hasn't gone viral.
Yet as I mentioned earlier, Dove's videos go viral almost every time because they are preaching their cause: to teach women that they are naturally beautiful. That is something that people can get behind. It deeply resonates inside of people all over the globe. That message changes who someone is, not just his or her behavior.
"YEAH, BUT WHY?"
So, we know that a business should not be limited to merely offering products or services. Aside from giving its customers or clients something useful to their personal lives or their own companies, businesses should aim to make a bigger impact that drives it to continue its work, develop as a company, and look forward to its future.
A Mission Statement should answer the question why you exist, yet most of what companies come up with answers the question, "what do we do?" At Joyco, we kept saying things like "Our mission is to bring great stories to life." That's great, but why do we do that? Why do we want and love to bring stories to life?
Back in 2013 Apple was hammered for their apparent and severely lacking mission statement. Here is what the company put forward:
- Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices with iPad.
This isn't a mission statement. This is a product list. This explains what they do, not why they do it. The key to figuring out your mission statement is to ask the question "Why" about six times. Only then do you start to get pretty close.
After about 2 hours of poking and prodding and continuously asking "Yeah, but why?" we came up with this:
- Our mission is to transform lives by connecting people through messages and storytelling that build faith and trust.
Is it perfect? Probably not, but we determined that our overarching goal for Joyco MultiMedia is to change people for the better by helping them to make real and lasting connections with others.
I have talked about the importance of connections before and I will again. Having connections changes your entire world and that is what we want to do.
Oh and "to be the best" is such a lame excuse for a mission statement. It's uninspiring and in no way creative.
DREAM AWAY, DREAMER
Vision statements are not necessarily as deep as a mission statement might be, but is still important. The purpose is for everyone in your business to know where the company is heading and for what it is striving.
In your vision statement you have the incredible opportunity to dream. You get to imagine what the future will be like and how you will have an impact on it!
However, the key to your vision statement is to actually work to achieve your vision.
Here is what we want to achieve at Joyco:
- Our vision is to redefine the creative process that will set new standards for telling stories and messages that passionately inspire, profoundly transform, and permanently connect people.
This is a pretty lofty goal, but an exciting one nonetheless. Our vision statement focuses on the creative process. Since we are a multimedia company, the creative process is central to everything we do and impacts A LOT of people.
We honestly don't know what the creative process is going to look like in 3 years, 5 years, or even 10 years especially since it is always evolving, but we know that we want to be at the forefront setting the creative standards.
Where do you want your company in 5 years? What breakthrough do you want to achieve? What level of influence do you desire?
Make sure that both your Mission and Vision statements are specific. Be specific in order to hold yourself accountable. And let the your company's personality shine through!