How to Write Your Career Vision & Mission Statement
You would be hard pressed to find a company that does not have some form of vision and/or mission statement that is publicly accessible. Companies are mixed, in that not all distinguish between the two. Google has one statement that they use interchangeably, which is “to organize all of the data in the world and make it accessible for everyone in a useful way“. While Ikea’s vision statement is –“At IKEA our vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people. Our business idea supports this vision by offering a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them.”
Whether you’re an employee or self-employed, it makes sense to have your own career related vision and/or mission statements. These build upon your core values and help define more clearly to you, and others, what is meaningful in your career. Jennell Evans has written a great article, ‘Vision and Mission – What’s the difference and why does it matter?’ While the article is written for organisations, the same fundamentals apply to us as individuals. If you think about it, you are the organisation. You market yourself and sell your time and expertise in return for money.
To assist in starting to create your vision statement, allow yourself time to reflect and imagine your ideal career and lifestyle 5-10 years from now. What would it look like? What kind of skills would you be using? With what types of people would you be working? How many hours per week? Where would you be based? Keep dreaming some more…….
If you need more help with your vision, see ‘The Power of Career Visioning: A How To Video & Steps’
The Career Vision Statement
In simple terms, the vision statement is created around the future state of what the entity (organisation or person) is working towards achieving over 5 – 10 years. It is written in a way that is inspirational and that can easily be understood and lived.
- Example: Career Vision Statement
“Empowering people globally to experience happiness & purpose in their workdays.”
The mission statement is written in the here and now, and outlines the purpose of the organisation / entity. It has a short-term focus (1- 4 years) and is written in a succinct manner, so it can be easily recalled. It should support the vision statement.
Borrowing from Jennell Evans article, ‘Vision and Mission – What’s the difference and why does it matter?’ the mission statement needs to answer 3 key questions;
- WHAT it does;
- WHO it does it for; and
- HOW it does what it does
Example: Career Mission Statement
What: Deliver virtual coaching and digital career and lifestyle related resources
Who: People across the globe wanting to feel more empowered in their work and experience an increased sense of happiness and purpose.
How: Exceptional client service, innovation, listening focussed!
“Leader in virtual coaching & digital resources that empower people across the globe to experience greater happiness & purpose in their workdays. Innovative, client focused, ensuring people are heard.”
While you may not feel the need right now to craft your vision and / or mission statement, if you are feeling as though your career is drifting or are contemplating making some career changes, it can be a valuable exercise for creating clarity.
You may like to create your vision & mission statement using pen & paper, PowerPoint, Excel, Pinterest or any medium that works best for you. In an age of ‘Brand You’ it makes sense to be thinking of ourselves and our careers in a more marketing savvy way.