Last week, Jeanine Gajewski, my favorite reporter (other than my brother anyway) interviewed me about mission statements for an article she is writing for SmartCEO Magazine. What are your clients doing, she asked? What is their process? Do they find them effective?
Mission statements? Girl, I said, I haven't thought about those babies in at least five years and as far as I know, my clients haven't either. Mission statements went the way of swoosh logos (grace of God, people finally stopped asking me for swoosh logos ala Nike!) and three-word taglines (you know what I'm talking about: STRENGTH INTEGRITY TRUST... or... SMELLY STINKY MALODOROUS).
Mission statements were all the rage during the dot com days when companies bathed in money and paid PR consultants big bucks to examine their corporate navels and spin up carefully worded and completely meaningless drivel that they plastered on their websites. No one ever read that crap except for job applicants who dutifully memorized it and blathered it back to the jean-clad interviewers in HR. Eventually, during the much-needed redesign of the corporate website, I suggested to the CEO that company ditch the damn thing and that was that.
I jest. But I do believe that the silly days of PR and marketing consulting are over and that companies now insist on real-world value for their money. ROI is the name of the game and let's face it: mission statements don't return jack.
So don't waste your money on elucidating corporate values for a mission statement. Instead, figure out how those values influence your brand... and if your customers would never, ever associate strength, integrity, or trust with your company, give me a call. We've got some real real-world work to do.