How does your company mission relate to partnerships?

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 A company’s mission is its shorter-term purpose. Unlike a vision, which is 20+ years into the future and aspirational, a mission is set less than five years into the future, and it is achievable. Good mission statements bring instant clarity when employees are setting priorities and making resourcing decisions. 

All organizational leaders make dozens if not hundreds of decisions every week to allocate their limited resources. A clear mission statement goes a long way in informing these critical decisions. A powerful mission statement should appeal to the emotions of everyone who hears it, and it should inspire actions to support the noble cause.   

Collins and Porras referred to an organization’s mission as its Big Hairy Audacious Goal or BHAG in Built to LastThe authors claimed after studying the difference between enduringly successful (and not successful) organizations, constantly setting a BHAG was a defining quality of success.  

Chris McChesney and his coauthors came to a similar conclusion in their best-selling book, The 4 Disciplines of Execution. McChesney claimed setting a Wildly Important Goal or WIG creates a focus and a sense of clarity that significantly improves a team’s probability of creating breakthrough results. 

In the early years of Ford Motor Company, their company mission was to manufacture quality automobiles that were affordable to every member of the working class. Until this noble claim was made by Ford, only the financial elite could afford an automobile. This belief and conviction to their company mission challenged every Ford employee to innovate. Their fierce commitment to their vision ultimately led to an ever-efficient assembly line which revolutionized manufacturing and allowed Ford to accomplish its mission. 

Success in business eventually comes down to our ability to influence action, in employees, partners, and customers. Whether you are trying to get your employees to perform, partnering companies to deliver, or encouraging customers to buy, in the end, your success depends on your ability to influence action. 

Politicians and preachers are absolute masters at this craft. They can get people emotionally vested to join a great cause and do it with genuine authenticity—not for financial gain. When you think of Martin Luther King Jr., what words come to mind? Of course, “I have a dream…” In 1963, long before cell phones, email, Meta (Facebook), and Twitter, Dr. King was able to amass more than 250,000 people to Washington D.C. to hear his speech. Why did so many people feel compelled to travel to this monumental event? Because they felt like it was their personal cause. Members of the audience felt as though they were personally vested to make a difference. 

A powerful mission statement will penetrate the hearts and minds of employees, partners, and customers alike. It will eventually be viewed, not as the company’s belief, but as a shared belief between employees, partners, and customers of the company. The mission statement serves as a common emotional link that should become an “x-factor” for an organization.  

Your company’s mission statement should be personal to your company. It may be helpful to see mission statements from other companies to get the creative juices flowing, but don’t feel confined by the examples you read. As a matter of fact, be creative and develop something this is totally unique—a statement that is your own! 

Below are a few examples of mission statements that were created to capture the mission for the respective companies. As you read each statement, determine if it inspires or appeals to you. If one does, you may start to gain an affinity toward that brand, just as owners of Harley-Davidson motorcycles feel an affinity to the powerful HD brand.   

Keep in mind that one of the great tools that a mission statement provides is that it acts as a vetting tool to determine which employees and partners are aligned with the company to help it accomplish the company’s vision. As Simon Sinek claimed, “If you hire people that can do a job, they will work for your money, but if you hire people who believe what you believe [align with your “why”], they will offer their blood, sweat, and tears.”  

Company: Patagonia 

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

Company: Nordstrom’s 

Mission: In store or on-line, wherever new opportunities arise, Nordstrom’s works relentlessly to give customers the most compelling shopping experience possible. 

Company: Warby Parker 

Mission: Offer designer eyewear at a revolutionary price, while leading the way for socially conscious businesses. 

Company: Harley-Davidson 

Mission: Harley-Davidson is an action-oriented, international company, a leader in its commitment to continuously improve our mutually beneficial relationships with stakeholders (customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders, government, and society). 

I did not find the mission statement of Harley-Davidson to be overly inspiring-I think it’s weak. However, there is one key word that I believe all owners of a Harley-Davidson motorcycle feel, and that is “relationship.” Harley-Davidson has done an amazing job over the decades building a strong brand of insanely loyal customers by focusing on their customers instead of appealing to the masses.  

How many of your friends or neighbors have a Honda or Yamaha motorcycle logo tattooed on their bicep? I cannot think of anyone I know. It seems, however, that thousands of Harley-Davidson owners have permanently etched the HD logo on their bodies to profess their loyalty to the Harley-Davidson brand. 

The mission of our company, PARTNERNOMICS, is the absolute driving force of why we exist. We strongly believe that companies of all sizes, start-up to multi-billion-dollar corporations, can benefit from forming and leading strategic partnerships. Our business growth trainers, coaches, and consultants have witnessed the power of transformative partnerships, and it is easy for us to speak with pure conviction when we interact with clients. 

Mission of PARTNERNOMICS: 

“To make strategic partnering become a core competency for every client, resulting in exponential growth for all.” 

Our mission statement succinctly describes who we serve, how we define success, and what our intended outcomes are. Every time our leaders find themselves in situations where critical resourcing decisions need to be made, they simple recite our mission statement and the answer becomes clear. They simply decide the path that will best allow us to make strategic partnering become a core competency for those companies that trust in us. 

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