An organization’s mission lies at the core of its reason for being. Its articulation, in the form of a mission statement, anchors an organization’s vision development, program planning, and constituency rallying. A clear, forceful and compelling mission statement identifies an organization by its purpose. It serves to focus its board, employee base, donors, beneficiaries and all other interested constituencies upon what an organization stands for and how it intends to change the world for the better. Clearly articulated mission represents every organization’s keystone to purpose, identity, and image.
Only after an organization has established and articulated its mission can it effectively develop its program. Based on its mission, a board develops its vision, which explains where it intends to direct the organization, how it intends to get there, and the scope of services it intends to provide to fulfill its purpose.
In addition to directional foundation, an organization’s mission statement lies at the heart of its development of an appropriate culture and ethical grounding. Culture and ethics permeate every board and every organization’s staff. Although culture and ethics develop regardless of the articulation of mission, such articulation can dramatically affect culture and ethics development.