The Role of Mission Statements in the Strategic Management Process

Topics: Strategic planning, Management, Strategic management Pages: 9 (2829 words) Published: April 12, 2013
Strategic Management

Coursework November 2012

Monday, 05 November 2012


“In writing mission statements, you are creating a brief description of what you want to focus on and what you want to accomplish.....” ‘The elements of success’, (internet website)

Discuss this statement and examine the role of mission statements in the Strategic Management process. (Your work should include examples to illustrate points made).

Table of content


Table of content2


I.Mission statement: the core of the company4

II.The first strategy step6

Summary / Conclusion8



Nowadays the creation of a company takes a lot of time and there are a lot of different steps to go through. Set-up a strategy is essential, the strategic management process exist to do so. One of the main first parts of this process is to make a mission statement; it’s a management concept which created a lot of disagreement between CEO’s, analysts and the human resource department. In their study, Bart and Baetz (1996) suggest that a well-crafted mission statement has to insure unanimity of the company purpose. It gives direction for all the stakeholders and provides a basis for objectives and strategies. A comprehensive mission statement will bring a clear business vision for all. According to a lot of studies (Alavi, Karami, 2009) or (Mullan 2002) the mission statement is an inseparable part of the corporate strategy and they maintain this statement based on the impact on performance. But Sufi and Lyons (2003) on their recent research said that there is no correlation between the mission statement and the annual turnover. There is a way to improve the company performances by managing their mission statement.

According to Welch and Welch (2005, p.14) an effective mission statement has to answer one and only one question: How do we intend to win this business? Companies want to be the best in their market and the mission statement is there to inspiring people to action at the end of the day (Brian Marsh, 1995). The mission statement is a marketing tool which gives motivation to the employee. Gordon Shaw (1995) said that the mission defines the scope of what you do whereas the vision has to be a vibrant and compelling image of the future purpose of the organization. Knowing that the mission statement is the mission written down, the vision and the mission tend to be similar. The website “The elements of success” suggest that “In writing mission statements, you are creating a brief description of what you want to focus on and what you want to accomplish…” This paper will discuss this previous statement through different examples and examine what is the place of the mission statement in the strategic management process.

I will first at all give a description of what a mission statement is and what every mission statement has to include. The second part of this paper will talk about the mission and the strategy into a company.

I. Mission statement: the core of the company

A mission statement is the mission of the company written down. It aims to provide to all the stakeholders the overall purpose (raison d’être) of the organization. This concept has been also broadened to encompass the vision of the company. The public image and the values of the organization have to be shown by this statement. But into a company there is also the concept of vision statement, which is what the organization aspires to be. Its purpose is to set up a view of the future. They were adopted in the early 2000s, but they now tend to be very similar and in regard of the political nature of the strategic management, they are used to bring together the people around the table in a company to focus on the same future. It insures unanimity of the purpose. But what should contain a mission statement?

The mission statement needs to be longer...

Bibliography: * Dessler G., (2007), Human Resource Management, 11th edition, pp. 78-81, USA – Upper Saddle River (NJ): Pearson Prentice Hall
* Hill, C., Jones, G
* David, F. David, F. (2003). It’s time to redraft your mission statement. Journal of Business Strategy [e-journal] 24(1), 11-14. Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
* Karami, A., Taghi Alavi, M. (2009). Managers of small and medium enterprise: mission statement and enhanced organizational performance. Journal of Managemen Development [e-journal] 28(6), 555-562. Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
* Simpson, D., Gordon, S., Marsh, B. (1994). Rethinking vision and mission. Strategy & Leadership [e-journal] 22(5), 9-11. Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
* Denton, K. (2001). Mission statements miss the point. Leadership & Organization Development Journal [e-journal] 22(7), 309-314. Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
* Sufi, T., Lyons, H. (2003). Mission statements exposed. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management [e-journal] 15(5), 255-262. Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
* Bart, C., Baetz, M. (1998). The relationship between mission statements and firm performance: an explosive study. Journal of Management study [e-journal] 35(6). Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
* Mullane, J. (2002). The mission statement is a strategic toll: when used properly. Management decision [e-journal] 40(5), 448-455. Available through: Emerald [Accessed 05 November 2012].
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