Week 23 of 52. Welcome to Drucker Mondays, a 52-week journey through the new book, A Year with Peter Drucker: 52 Weeks of Coaching for Leadership Effectiveness, by Joseph A. Maciariello. Each Monday, we'll feature a Drucker fan and his or her favorite snippet from the week's topic. (Subscribe on this page.) Tami Heim is our guest writer today.
THE BIG IDEA FROM THE BOOK: An organization’s mission statement can create strong unity and sense of purpose for all those who serve in the organization. It’s most effective when it is fully vetted and universally agreed upon so that it becomes the guiding force for decisions, behaviors, and tangible outcomes.
TAMI HEIM'S FAVORITE DRUCKER INSIGHTS from Week 23, pages 177-183:
• Developing a mission statement to actually guide the work of the organization is a high-stakes decision that deserves care and constructive conflict.
• The assumptions embedded in any mission statement must fit reality.
• You need three things for a good mission statement: opportunities, competence, and commitment.
TAMI HEIM'S COLOR COMMENTARY:
There are many different frameworks for creating an effective mission statement. Getting them right has become so critical for organizations that consultants have successfully discovered how to make a profitable business out of simply assisting in their development.
For the past three decades, I have worked in both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. In all of them I have been part of the hard work it takes to redefine the mission statement. It does require great intentionality and flourishes when every level of the organization has a way to contribute to it. Enrollment and alignment, in addition to identifying the call to something bigger than the organization itself, are keys to creating a mission statement that will ultimately influence behaviors, decision-making, and outcomes.
A leader’s passion for the mission must breathe life into it every day. An organization’s mission statement is most transformational when its stewards give it the center stage it deserves. The CEO and senior leadership teams must reinforce and model the mission’s significance, demonstrate how it guides decisions, and emphasize how it inspires whatever action is taken to achieve it.
In a 2013 interview I conducted with Wess Stafford, former CEO of Compassion International, we talked about Compassion’s mission. Wess explained, “When you share your mission and it doesn’t move you to tears in the first 90 seconds, you need to get out of the way. You need to resign. Yes resign, so the organization can find a leader who has a passion worthy of the call.”
I have never heard the importance of mission so elegantly articulated as Wess did that day. It was a challenge I took to heart in my own personal commitment to the mission of the ministry I serve.
THIS WEEK'S QUOTES & COMMENTARY BY TAMI HEIM:
1. Revisit your mission statement with fresh eyes. What is it about the mission that truly inspires you?
2. Assess your schedule and your activity for the day—and then identify exactly how what you have planned will advance your organization’s mission.
3. Integrate the mission statement into a conversation or written communication each day and evaluate if it moves or inspires action.
On June 15, 2015, David Schmidt of Wise Planning in Wheaton, Ill., will share his color commentary on Week 24’s topic, “A Primer on Market Research of Noncustomers,” the fourth of five weeks on “Maintaining Your Organization Through Change.”