simon-fitall-539090-unsplash(Originally posted 05/29/2018)

All organizations should summarize their goals and objectives in mission and vision statements. Why? Because, from our experience, businesses that clearly define their mission and vision—as well as creating and executing a strategic plan—outperform those that don’t. And the research we’ve read concurs.

Along with being key elements of a company’s branding strategy, strong mission and vision statements also impact a company’s ability to 1) attract and retain talent, and, 2) build a cohesive culture throughout the organization.

Especially for start-ups and other small to medium-sized businesses, it’s essential to develop your business and marketing plans early in the process around both a clearly defined and well-written mission statement and a clearly articulated vision statement.

Mission and vision statements are often confused with each other but are separate core elements of your company’s strategy. While a mission statement describes what a company wants to do now, a vision statement outlines what a company wants to be in the future.

The mission statement concentrates on the present; it defines the company’s critical processes and promises, while at the same time reminding the company’s human assets of their desired level of performance.

The vision statement focuses on the future; it is a source of inspiration and motivation. Often it describes not just the future of the organization but the future of the industry or society in which the organization hopes to effect change.

In other words, a vision is aspiration . . . a mission is actionable.

Here are the ways some well-known companies have crafted their mission and vision statements:

Company: ADP

Mission: Power organizations with insightful solutions that drive business success.

Vision: Be the world’s authority on helping organizations focus on what matters.

Company: AirBnB

Mission: Belong anywhere.

Vision: Tapping into the universal human yearning to belong — the desire to feel welcomed, respected, and appreciated for who you are, no matter where you might be.

Company: Amazon

Mission: We strive to offer our customers the lowest possible prices, the best available selection, and the utmost convenience.

Vision: To be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.

Company: Caterpillar

Mission: To enable economic growth through infrastructure and energy development, and to provide solutions that support communities and protect the planet.

Vision: Our vision is a world in which all people’s basic needs — such as shelter, clean water, sanitation, food and reliable power — are fulfilled in an environmentally sustainable way and a company that improves the quality of the environment and the communities where we live and work.

Company: Cisco

Mission: Shape the future of the Internet by creating unprecedented value and opportunity for our customers, employees, investors, and ecosystem partners.

Vision: Changing the way we work, live, play, and learn.

Company: Coinbase

Mission: The mission of Coinbase is to create an open financial system for the world.

Vision: Digital currency will bring about more innovation, efficiency, and equality of opportunity in the world by creating an open financial system.

Company: Ebay

Mission: To be the world’s favorite destination for discovering great value and unique selection.

Vision: Our vision for commerce is one that is enabled by people, powered by technology, and open to everyone.

Company: Facebook

Mission: To give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.

Vision: People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.

Company: Ferrari

Mission: We build cars, symbols of Italian excellence the world over, and we do so to win on both road and track. Unique creations that fuel the Prancing Horse legend and generate a “World of Dreams and Emotions”.

Vision: Ferrari, Italian Excellence that makes the world dream.

Company: GoDaddy

Mission: We are here to help our customers kick ass. We do that by living our strategy and ruthlessly prioritizing our work to create simple elegant technology that delights our customers – all while delivering service that is second to none. Every single day, we join forces across teams and groups to break down barriers, build new markets and stare down the impossible until the impossible blinks.

Vision: We will radically shift the global economy toward small business by empowering people to easily start, confidently grow and successfully run their own ventures.

Company: Google

Mission:  To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.

Vision: To provide access to the world’s information in one click.

Company: Ikea

Mission: Offer a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them.

Vision: To create a better everyday life for the many people.

Company: Intel

Mission: Utilize the power of Moore’s Law to bring smart, connected devices to every person on earth.

Vision: If it is smart and connected, it is best with Intel.

Company: Kaiser Permanente

Mission: Kaiser Permanente exists to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve.

Vision: We are trusted partners in total health, collaborating with people to help them thrive and creating communities that are among the healthiest in the nation.

Company: LinkedIn

Mission: To connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.

Vision: To create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce.

Company: Patagonia

Mission: Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.

Vision: A love of wild and beautiful places demands participation in the fight to save them, and to help reverse the steep decline in the overall environmental health of our planet.

Company: Samsung

Mission: Become one of the world’s top five brands by 2020.

Vision: Inspire the world. Create the future.

Company: Sony

Mission: A company that inspires and fulfills your curiosity.

Vision: Using our unlimited passion for technology, content and services to deliver groundbreaking new excitement and entertainment, as only Sony can.

Company: Southwest Airlines

Mission: The mission of Southwest Airlines is dedication to the highest quality of customer service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and company spirit.

Vision: To become the world’s most loved, most flown, and most profitable airline.

Company: Tesla

Mission: To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

Vision: To create the most compelling car company of the 21st century by driving the world’s transition to electric vehicles.

Company: Toyota USA

Mission: To attract and attain customers with high-valued products and services and the most satisfying ownership experience in America.

Vision: To be the most successful and respected car company in America.

Company: Uber

Mission: Transportation as reliable as running water, everywhere for everyone.

Vision: Smarter transportation with fewer cars and greater access. Transportation that’s safer, cheaper, and more reliable; transportation that creates more job opportunities and higher incomes for drivers.

Company: Whole Foods

Mission: Whole Foods Market is a dynamic leader in the quality food business. We are a mission-driven company that aims to set the standards of excellence for food retailers. We are building a business in which high standards permeate all aspects of our company. Quality is a state of mind at Whole Foods Market.

Vision: Whole foods, Whole People, Whole Planet.

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