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How Do Mission Statements Impact Organizational Culture?

In recent years, there has been more attention on the importance of company culture. Now more than ever, an organization's prevalent attitude and values are part of a greater public conversation. Company culture impacts how customers or clients determine who they will patronize and how new talent seeks employment opportunities.

Academic institutions build programs to support this growing component of the business world. For example, the online Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership from Northern Kentucky University (NKU) develops leadership skills necessary to build solid teams regardless of the industry graduates pursue. 

With a focus on foundational theory, organizational leadership positions individuals to navigate challenges successfully while incorporating ethical decision-making. In addition, the core strengths of communication and problem-solving will help leaders encourage their teams, foster a diverse and inclusive working environment, and improve the experience for everyone involved. 

Set in Stone

Underlying the commitment to the customer or the work at hand is a set of philosophies, values and ideals that form a company's unique identity. Leadership members must have the company's identity in mind as they direct employees to set goals and make decisions that fit the organization's vision.  

A critical element in developing a unified culture for any organization comes in the form of a mission statement. These directives possess a clear and concise message about a company's values, or according to Fond, "A company mission statement is an action-based statement that declares the purpose of an organization and how they serve their customers." 

The concept may seem simple when done well, and the impact of mission statements can have a ripple effect throughout an organization. 

"Employees committed to a company's mission experience higher productivity levels and engagement. They are also 54% more likely to stay for at least five years at a company, reducing turnover costs," Fond notes. "Furthermore, these employees are 30% more likely to become top-performers than those who are not committed to your company's mission." 

Define the Terms

As leadership communicates goals through various departments, employees pick up on key themes and an organization's fulfillment of those goals or lack thereof. These expectations help all staff understand how they fit into the greater whole. Helping employees gain a sense of purpose is invaluable both on an organizational level and for the individual trying to derive meaning from their role. 

The greater this sense of purpose internally, the more appealing an organization is to the outside world. Culture and shared organizational vision ultimately build a company's reputation and influence group dynamics. Positivity is contagious and will increase the likelihood of desired outcomes. 

In an article on company culture, Indeed describes the vitality of these ideas: "Company culture is one of the first things prospective hires look for when researching potential employers. Having a clearly defined and positive organizational culture can help you attract competitive candidates, streamline processes, reduce employee turnover and boost overall productivity."   

A good mission statement affects all facets of a company, from culture and employee satisfaction to marketing and advertising. It provides companies the opportunity to make clear to consumers and employees what the organization values. Students with a B.A. in Organizational Leadership will understand how mission statements represent one of the essential forces underlying successful leadership.  

Learn more about Northern Kentucky University's online Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership program

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