Defining Mission and Vision Statements for Business Plan Optimisation(Updated)

Original version: 03/10/17

There is understandably a lot of confusion when it comes to distinguishing between the terms mission and vision, especially within the context of business.  Both words tend to allude to the same thing. However, there is a difference, which, when clearly understood, enables an effective use of these individual statements to drive business strategy.

The mission statement succinctly outlines the immediate goal the company is trying to achieve at that point in time. For example, if you create a business making travel pillows, the mission statement could read, “To become the market leader in Bangkok”.

The vision statement takes a longer term view on the company‘s intended state, whether it is over the next 2, 5 or 10 years. The vision statement works as a guide for the company’s changing aspirations, while serving to motivate and inspire the company’s employees.  

Both statements can be altered to reflect a new direction that the company leaders want to take.  The vision statement in particular, leverages the values that guide the behaviour of it’s employees, defining the personality of the company.

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