As a mentor for many wedding industry professionals, I have the privilege to have been part of the very early beginnings of several businesses over the years, and to be honest, it’s one of my favorite things to do – working one-on-one with wedding professionals to launch their first (or second, or third) company. I love it specifically because it allows me the chance to watch a company come together right before my eyes – and of course, I love the excitement and energy that every business owner puts into starting a company.
There are several exercises that I go through with my mentoring clients, whether they are new or already established in the industry. One of my favorite tasks is centered on determining the mission statement, vision statement and core values of their business.
Some of you may be rolling your eyes right about now, or at the very least you have started mentally thinking about what you’re going to have for dinner tonight. I get it – “core values, mission statement, vision statement” = boring corporate-speak.
It really isn’t though. In fact, these are critical elements that can have a profound effect on the success of your business.
Not convinced? Bear with me – let’s take a look at how each of these differs, and the purpose that they serve, and finally, how they impact your business.
According to the smart minds at 7Geese, these elements can be defined as follows:
Mission Statement: This is what your company actually does – and why. Your mission statement should be specific enough that people understand what you do and how it may differ from your competitors.
Vision Statement: This is what your company aspires to be. Your vision statement can should help drive decisions and goals in your company. This is your ideal future state.
Core Values: Core values support the vision, shape the culture, and reflect what your company values. They are your company’s principles, beliefs, or philosophy of values.
So to sum up: Your mission statement is what your company does, your vision statement is what you want your company to be, and your core values are the beliefs and values that you hold true in executing both your mission and vision statements.
Let’s talk about why they matter and what impact they can have on your business:
Your mission statement is important because:
- it clarifies to YOU what you do and why you do it
- it tells your customers/clients what your business does and why they should choose you over your competitors
- it clearly defines your “why” – why you do what you do, and why it matters to your customers/clients
- it identifies what you specialize in, what makes you different, and/or what impact you want to have in the lives of your clients
A good mission statement should:
- clearly communicate what your company does and why
- identify what sets you apart from your competitors and;
- communicate what impact you will have on the lives of your clients. (i.e. what problem/pain point will you solve for them)
When it comes to your VISION statement, you’re looking at the ideal future state of your business (how fun!) and this means you can get a little creative.
Your vision statement is important because:
- it will serve as a reminder to your future self of what your dream for your business was (especially important when you find yourself feeling burned out or getting off track)
- it provides you with a goal destination – which will motivate and inspire you and your team
- it clarifies what success looks like for you within your business
A good vision statement should:
- be future-oriented. Think about where you want to be in 5 years, for example.
- be inspirational and positive. Use words that are meaningful and powerful, words that will get you pumped up!
- be realistic, but ambitious. Allow yourself to dream, but if your goals feel realistic, you’re more likely to work towards them.
Your core values are, in my opinion, the most important part of this excercise. They truly define the heart of your business, and when communicated correctly, your core values will strongly resonate with your ideal client.
Why core values are important:
- Your core values help to define your brand
- They provide your team with a blueprint of expectations on how they are to behave and perform when they work for you
- Your core values help you speak directly to your ideal clients – having common values creates an instant connection and increases the trust factor
- They serve as a filter for any decision-making within your company. If an opportunity or project doesn’t fit in with your core values, you can be confident saying “no”
- Core values set the tone for the relationships you will build within your business – not just with clients, but with fellow wedding professionals, event colleagues, vendors, partners, and suppliers.
There are many ways to compile and communicate your core values, but I always encourage that you keep them short, powerful, and follow them with a brief explanation to provide context.
During a discussion about core values in the Wedpreneur Community, one of our members, Kasey Kyprianou of Revelry and Heart referred to a blog post she had written outlining her core values. I think they are a great example, so feel free to check them out HERE. What I love so much about her core values is that they clearly tie into her brand (since both revelry and heart are two of her core values), and she provides a heartfelt and passionate explanation (context) for each value. Each value aligns perfectly with the others, and when considered as a whole, you get a very clear idea of what her business is all about.
If I’ve inspired you enough that you’re ready to rock your Vision, Mission & Core Value statements, I’ve got a little somethin’ somethin’ to make your life easier… you guessed it – a free download! CLICK HERE to access it, and feel free to post any questions or comments in the comments section – I love hearing from you!