Entrepreneurs: Define Your Mission and Vision for Success; a Mentor Can Help


By: Bridget Weston, CEO of SCORE

If you are an entrepreneur building a small business, you know that it takes more than spreadsheets, financial projections, and a big marketing push to reach business success; it also takes passion, dedication, and attention to detail. 

In order to provide your company with a solid foundation, you must define a clear mission and a well-articulated vision.

When there’s too much to do and not enough time to do it, crafting your mission and vision might appear to have a lower return on investment than other pressing demands. Don’t fall for this short-term thinking! Lack of clarity always leads to difficulties down the road. Defining your mission and vision now will ensure that all future work is moving you in the right direction, towards achieving your goals. Additionally, angel investor portfolio companies will benefit from the clarity and knowledge being shared.

Defining Your Company Mission:

The purpose of the mission statement is to present a short summary of your business’ purpose and focus. The mission statement can be complex or succinct; but, refrain from making it longer than one paragraph. In most cases, it shouldn’t be longer than one sentence.

Your mission statement should be clear and simple enough to stand on its own, without additional explanation.

For example: at, SCORE, our mission is to foster vibrant small business communities through mentoring and education.

Vision

Picture your vision statement as a glimpse into your business’s future. While your mission statement describes your company’s goal, your vision statement articulates what you want the business to become, and what the world will look like once your business achieves its mission.

For example: at SCORE, our vision is that every person has the support they need to thrive as a small business owner.

Your vision statement faces both internally and externally. It is both aspirational and inspirational. For employees, it creates a picture of what the future looks like for your business and inspires them to help get it there. For customers, it provides a picture of what your company is working toward and invites them along for the ride.

When crafting your vision statement, you and your team will need to ask some important questions about the future. Here are some to get you started:

  • What problem(s) does our company want to solve?
  • What does future success look like for our company?
  • How large will our customer base be?
  • Does our vision align with our mission?

The vision statement will become a key component of your business’s future identity, so you want to make sure that it is broad enough to serve as an ideal, but specific enough that it motivates people to want to do business with you.  

A SCORE Mentor Can Help:

Whether your business is well established or just starting up, clearly defined mission and vision statements will help your company reach its goals, gain support, and thrive. A SCORE mentor can walk you through the process, identify what’s most important to you and help your business grow. Reach out to a mentor today to get started!

SCORE is the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, and we are dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals. Since 1964, SCORE has provided education and mentorship to more than 11 million entrepreneurs.

About the Author: Bridget Weston is the CEO of the SCORE Association, where she provides executive leadership and works directly and collaboratively with the Board of Directors to establish the vision and direction of SCORE. In her 10 years with the organization, she has developed an in-depth understanding of the needs and challenges of our volunteers and has established significant relationships on the Hill. Through her unwavering commitment and passion for SCORE’s success, Ms. Weston motivates, directs and provides guidance to SCORE’s staff, its 300+ chapters and over 10,000 volunteers.

About SCORE: Since 1964, SCORE has helped 11 million entrepreneurs to start or grow a business. SCORE's 10,000 volunteers provide free mentoring, workshops and educational services to 1,500+ communities nationwide, creating 45,027 new businesses and 74,535 non-owner jobs in 2020 alone. Visit SCORE at www.score.org. Follow @SCOREMentors on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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