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Getting On The Black In Business

Dec 15, 2007
One thing that most business executives hate is seeing losses or red marks on their financial statements. Anyone in his right mind would want to invest in business and make a profit. It is simply the common thing that people look for right now but they fail to realize the proper way to do it. Perhaps with good business strategies, many corporations can see themselves smiling more from thereon.

A simple strategic thinking warm-up exercise is to review and assess your mission, vision and values. Well, I'll let you be the judge on just how simple or not that may be - but here is a primer to get you going.

Mission, of course, is simply a statement of your company's purpose or why it exists. It needn't be cleverly written, lofty, or even inspirational. It should, however, be crystal clear to you and everyone connected with your organization - directing all to contribute their very best to your company goals and objectives. A good example of a simple and clear mission statement is from Ben & Jerry's, the Vermont ice cream maker. It reads: "To make, distribute and sell the finest quality all-natural ice cream and related products in a wide variety of innovative flavors made from Vermont dairy products"

Anyone working at or with Ben & Jerry's certainly knows what the company is all about and if they're contributing to the company mission.

Vision is usually not as simple. Some would argue it is the most critical element for an organization's success. It provides direction and drives everything that is done in your company. It may be an overused cliché, but it's true--a company without a vision is like a ship without a rudder. It's your responsibility to set the vision for your company, i.e. a clear and compelling picture of what the future will look like.

Unlike a mission statement, it's good to make your company vision challenging, even inspirational. Being on board with where the company is going motivates people to become fully engaged in the company's business - associates and vendors alike. Also, committing your vision to a carefully written statement creates an excellent tool for assessing progress and change, maintaining focus, and enlisting others on your company's journey to success.

Values are individual working traits and qualities that are as important to you as your company goals and objectives. They are strongly held beliefs about how your company should go about its work. They define behavior and mindset rather than results and outcomes. They are the fundamental rules of engagement for working in your company. Virtually all successful business leaders, from solo-preneurs to CEO's of large corporate entities, attribute their success to a strong set of values. They report that the tough job of continuous decision-making is greatly enhanced by the integration of their values and guiding beliefs into their daily work. Typically just a few carefully considered traits and qualities representing the cornerstones of the way work will be conducted in your company are your core values.
About the Author
Jon Caldwell is a businessman and entrepreneur. Most of his accomplishments can be found at http://www.business-medium.com/business-mediumcat/bus-mediumlist.php
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