You begin with a purpose. A purpose is the reason why your organization has begun a journey, guided by the deeply-held values and beliefs that inspire it to make a difference.
Your mission follows the path your organization sets to arrive at its destination: When someone asks you where you are going, they ask you how you are going to get there. Your mission is the how: the unique way you do what you do, the path you choose to follow, the decisions you make to get to your destination.
Vision is your destination, at a point in the near or distant future. It's your goal, and what you expect to find when you arrive at the destination. What can also be the specific product or service you sell. Your mission is your vision in action, connecting your purpose with your impact.
- Purpose guides you. Your purpose statement articulates why you do what you do, why your organization exists, and why you serve a higher purpose (your cause).
- Mission drives you. Your mission statement is how you accomplish your purpose; your mission is what drives you every day to fulfill your purpose. It's a direct path to your purpose and vision. Mission is doing what matters and eliminating the distractions; it unlocks the strategy that delivers results and impact.
- Vision is where you aspire to be. Your vision statement is what you will achieve in the future, the results you want to reach for, the measurable impact you want to make. Your vision reminds you what the difference you make will look like, what change will happen. Vision aligns leaders and followers. It is an ongoing process of aligning your mission with your purpose. Vision keeps you on course, to fulfill your purpose.
- Impact is what matters: What are the strategic goals that align with your purpose, and what are the measurable results of achieving your vision?