Business Tips: How Purpose, Mission and Vision Statements Can Guide Your Business

Lauren Sparling


Your purpose, mission and vision statements are key components for the foundation of your business. To write these, you should first take stock of your company's values and goals. You can use your values and goals to help you craft statements that show your customers what your company stands for and why they should do business with you instead of someone else.

While interconnected, each one of these statements plays a different role in the way your business is perceived and affects your company's culture in its own unique way. The perfect purpose, mission or vision statement won't come to you overnight, and you’ll likely have to readjust them over time to make sure they align with your company’s values and development.

In short, the difference between the three statements can be summed up like this:

Purpose: Why do we exist

Mission: How will we act on our purpose

Vision: What will the world look like when we’re done with our mission


Crafting Your Statements


Many companies now are branding themselves as “purpose-driven companies” to distinguish themselves amongst competitors and show that they stand for more than just the bottom line. For example, Patagonia is well known for their purpose to save the planet, and they back up this statement by donating a yearly percentage of sales to preserving the environment. Sustainability, social justice and environmental preservation are common topics that companies are adopting in their purpose statements. This allows companies to show customers that they are more than just a sales company, but one that gives back and cares about the world. However, your company's purpose does not need to be a huge social issue, it can simply be a straightforward statement addressing your overall values.

For example, here are purpose statements from Kellogg and Southwest Airlines.

Kellogg: Nourishing families so they can flourish and thrive

Southwest Airlines: Connect people to what's important in their lives through friendly, reliable, and low-cost air travel


Mission Statement:

Your mission statement is a short statement that describes the core values of your business and your current business plans. The mission statement is often used as a slogan in marketing campaigns and should be something people can connect with. Your mission statement should be present tense and they usually start with “To” and then a verb. For example, “to inspire”, “to provide”, “to create” are common beginnings of mission statements.

Here are the mission statements from Starbucks and Ebay.

Starbucks: To inspire and nurture the human spirit—one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time

EBay: To be the world’s favorite destination for discovering great value and unique selection.

Vision Statement:

Your vision statement gives an idealistic view of what you hope your business will accomplish in the future. This statement will outline your company goals while still being broad enough to encompass an overarching vision that you hope to obtain.

For example, the following are vision statements from LinkedIn and Meta:

LinkedIn: Create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce

Meta: Give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together


Both examples address the future each company hopes to create in a concise, general way.

Your purpose, mission, and vision statements are important tools for branding your company and navigating your future. You likely won't curate the perfect statements on your first try, but it will be something you perfect over time as you get a better understanding of your company and its values. These statements are what can ultimately set you apart from other businesses and give you a spotlight to promote your story.