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Redefining Your Mission Statement

Haven't updated your mission statement since you started your business? Here's how to get started.

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Reassessing your mission statement starts with asking your employees how closely it reflects how the company works. Is it realistic? Are we living up to it? Is it used on the job? Where can we do better? This critical look in the entrepreneurial mirror is daunting, but the rewards are great. You'll connect with your employees, who will respect you for taking an honest, warts-and-all look at your company. A staff meeting or a survey are both good options for getting feedback.

If you find dissonance in your mission statement, get rid of it. That may require changing some of your company procedures. Don't leave yourself any wiggle room, either. If you write that your company will have "integrity," for example, what does that mean? Your mission statement should define what integrity means on the job, and how it will be measured in company performance. Make sure your mission statement is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and trackable. You'll increase its usefulness as a benchmark in staff meetings as well as in your brand strategy.