Energize Your Small Business With a Powerful Mission Statement

Your mission statement guides your small business. Use a mission statement generator or craft your own message so your business has the best chance of success.

A strong mission statement is a powerful tool for businesses who know how to use it. This short, energetic statement is meant to bring inspiration, communicate your core values, and connect with the visionary human spirit in each of us.

In just a few short words, a good mission statement clearly and succinctly lays out your company's purpose— and the direction you're headed in this season, and the next.

In today's article, we'll learn exactly what goes into the best company mission statements. By dissecting several mission statement examples, we'll discover the best words, core values, and emotional language you can use when you write a mission statement for your own business that connects with your target audience.

So grab a pen and paper, and let's begin!

How your company's mission statement guides its future

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are 31.7 million small businessesin the United States alone! (That's a lot of mission statements!) Surprisingly, of those businesses, 81% percent have justone employee. Over the past 20 years, only 67.6% of new small businesses survived longer than two years, and less than half survived over five years.

So small businesses predominantly have small teams and struggle to succeed for more than a few years as everyday life throws hurdles and problems their way. That makes us wonder, would more small businesses succeed if they had a better brand strategy, more inspiring mission and vision statements, and a well-defined target audience? We believe, yes! And crafting your own expert mission statement is a great place to start.

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The role of an effective mission statement

A powerful mission statement is like a roadmap for your customer-centric company. It tells you and your employees where you're going and tells your customers what you value most.

Your mission statement should serve as the guiding light for your leadership, providing a clear lens to look through when evaluating big decisions. The right company mission statement protects your business from missteps and distractions, and embodies your company spirit in just a few words. In short, the right mission statement just might keep you in business!

The difference between mission statements and vision statements

Before we take a look at what goes into the best mission statements, it's important to note the difference between mission and vision statements.

A company's mission statement is the clear, concise declaration of what they do, for whom, and why that outcome is valuable. It's a power-packed statement that communicates human spirit, core values, and your company's purpose, all in a few words.

A well-crafted mission statement is different from your company's vision statement, which describes the improved world your business wants to help create. A vision statement looks to the future and is meant to bring inspiration. A successful vision statement is inspiring, original, and memorable.

The role of a strong vision statement

Your company's vision statement should describe who your company wants to become by carrying out your business' mission statement consistently over time.

Your mission and vision statements are linked— because your vision statement is the long-term extension of your mission statement.

The best vision statements describe the difference your company wants to make in the world. They define the positive impact your core values will have, and how you aim to support the communities you serve. And they carry your inspiring company spirit out into the world.

For example, the vision statements of socially conscious businesses may include words like equality, economic growth, sustainability, and conservation. Or customer-centric businesses may use phrases like customer experience, quality service, or responsiveness.

Your mission and vision statement work together to guide the growth and development of your business. That's why every company needs a clear, compelling, memorable set of statements.

Looking for inspiration? Check out these 10 examples of good mission statements

These ten mission statement examples from major business organizations around the world show how the right inspiring mission statement sums up your company's biggest goals in just a few stirring words:

  • Gucci: "To become the leader in the luxury market at a worldwide level."
  • Nintendo: "We believe it is essential not only to provide products of the highest quality but to treat every customer with attention, consideration, and respect."
  • Microsoft: "To empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more."
  • IKEA: "Offering 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."
  • Starbucks: "To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time."
  • Grammarly: "To improve lives by improving communication."
  • Amazon: "We strive to offer our customers the lowest possible prices, the best available selection, and the utmost convenience."
  • Southwest Airlines: "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"
  • Tesla: "To create the most compelling car company of the 21st century by driving the world's transition to electric vehicles."
  • Nike: "To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world."

Each of these mission statement examples, no matter the business' industry or product, are similar. Each declares the business' desire to grow, innovate, change the world, care for people, and offer great quality and service.

Out of these ten company mission statement examples, three stand out

Nike's mission statement is broadly inspirational

The Nike mission statement encompasses the company's desire to not just provide the clothing and equipment athletes need to succeed— but to inspire them to something greater.

This is a great mission statement because it guides every single team at the company, from the product developers, to the marketers, to the office staff, and everyone in between!

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Starbucks' mission statement focuses on the "how" behind the mission

The Starbucks mission statement is another of our favorite great mission statement examples because the phrase, "To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time," describes how the company will deliver on this mission— through its staff, its products, and in the community.

This is one of the best mission statements we've seen because it packs so much inspiration and meaning into just a few words.

Southwest Airlines' mission statement describes their customer-service commitment

Finally, the Southwest Airlines mission statement stands out because it describes how the company serves customers with an unending commitment to high-quality service.

This is a good mission statement because it offers clear guidance on what Southwest Airlines will do and won't do— the company will always aim to put the customer first. They will implement solutions that make travel easier, safer, and more affordable for customers. And they will care for the world's professionals, wherever they travel.

While Southwest Airlines may not always fulfill its company mission statement, at least the phrase serves as a strong guiding light.

When you're ready to write a mission statement for your own business, keep these mission statement examples in mind. They just might inspire you to write a great statement of your own!

Check out our full list of over 100 different mission statement examplesfrom small, midsize, and large corporations around the world.

Key elements of a good mission statement

Your company's mission statement should help every stakeholder— from your key leaders to your contract workers, and everyone in between— act and operate in a focused, targeted way. And for small businesses, that unified focus is crucial for your long-term success.

These four elements work together to an effective mission statement

Communicate your value

The first element new mission statements should include is a description of the value you offer your employees, customers, and the community. Does your company enable economic growth? Are you fighting the environmental crisis? Or are you focused on furthering the sustainable energy sector, empowering a million creative artists, or creating the perfect cup of coffee?

Your value can be big or small, local or global, and internal or external. But it has to be powerful!

Add a spark of inspiration

Next, think about why people should want to work for or with your company. When you're crafting a new mission statement, use inspirational words to build excitement. In the company mission statement examples we shared above, each company shared an inspirational action behind their mission— Tesla aims to drive the EV revolution, Grammarly is on a mission to improve communication, and Gucci strives to be the global fashion leader.

Consider, what goals will make your mission statement inspire your team and customers?

Make it exciting, but realistic

Most mission statements focus on a goal that's exciting, but attainable. For example, you may not be able to get your product in the hands of every single person in the world. But you can create the most compelling shopping experience for your target market. You may not be able to cure cancer, but you can offer superior quality healthcare services to those in your community. And you may not be theonlycompany that offers a valuable product, but you can become one of the world's leading producers.

See the difference between an impossible goal and one that is plausible, but still inspiring?

Be specific

This final element of your business' mission statement describes how you're going to carry out your big goals. The best mission statements are inspiring, but specific enough that they serve as a clear path forward. And when your mission statement defines how you can execute your goals (by serving your customers better, being cost effective, or offering innovative products, for example), you finally have a statement you and your team can use as a guiding tool.

Ready to write your business mission statement? There are two ways to get started

So you know what goes into a great mission statement and you've been inspired by a handful of mission statements from the biggest companies in the world. Now, it's time to create (or update) your own statement!

Some teams choose to write their own company mission statement from scratch, while others use a business mission statement generator tool. Whether you write your own or use a tool, a good business mission statement must be stirring, relatable, and clear.

Want more tips for writing your own mission statement? Check out our full mission statement how-to guide: How To Write an Impactful Mission Statement

Why use a business mission statement generator?

A generator helps draft several company mission statements you can choose from and edit further on your own. Crafting mission statements is tricky! But using a generator to get the ideas flowing is a great way to come up with several successful mission statements to share with your team— without wasting time on trial and error.

Mission statement generators help you write an empowering mission statement without all the trial and error by asking you several questions. You'll likely see questions such as what industry you're in, what your customers are like, and what your brand's personality is.

Once you've answered the initial questions, the generator will create several great mission statements that declare your business' purpose in the world. Instead of spending hours drafting your own options, you can spend minutes choosing your favorite!

At ZeBrand, our brand guidelines builderwill help you generate not just your mission statement, but your complete brand strategy, visual identity, and messaging.

It's an all-encompassing, user-friendly digital tool that helps align every area of your small business, from your customer persona and brand DNA, to your brand design and guidelines. That alignment improves your chances of beating the odds and succeeding as a growing, sustainable brand.

ZeBrand's brand-building platform will walk you through outlining your brand strategy without relying on an agency.Learn More

Need a little more help? Work with a ZeBrand Brand Coach to generate your mission statement and brand strategy

ZeBrand's powerful brand generator is a simple but effective tool any business owner can use to create their full brand identity. But that's not all ZeBrand offers. For businesses that want to accelerate their growth and optimize every element of their brand strategy, ZeBrand's expert Brand Coaches can work one-on-one with you to articulate your mission statement, align your initiatives around your company's services, and enhance your marketing.

You do need a cohesive brand and a captivating mission statement, but you don't have to create it alone!

The expert team and Brand Coaches here at ZeBrand can help you build a brand that resonates, inspires, and expands your business. To get to work on your own mission statement and brand identity, start here.