“Quality means the world to us” says Motorola.
“The world on time” states Federal Express.
“Quality, Service, Cleanliness and Value” says McDonald’s Restaurants.
Ever wonder where those great mottos for major companies come from? They aren’t mission statements, nor vision statements; not exactly an advertising slogan, though they can serve as an effective motto in advertising say some. Your Guiding Principle is a brief statement that distills the attitudes of you and your employees and sets your company’s image for your services or product.
If one were asked to write the mission statement for the Polaroid Corporation, it might say some-thing like: “Design, build and market photographic products giving instant gratification to amateur photographers.” The key phrase is instant gratification. All of Polaroid’s efforts, whether seen internally or externally, are organized around the idea that there is a vast market for photographers who get their pleasure from the finished photograph, not the process leading to it. Instant gratification is the organizing or Guiding Principle of Polaroid’s efforts, whether they be engineering, manufacturing or marketing.
A good Guiding Principle speaks to your company’s future direction and values in a few words. Your Guiding Principal communicates the vision by capturing the essence of what your organization will be. Too often the commitment of developing first a mission statement , then a vision statement is short changed by the use of a clever motto. Management has nothing to engage its goals or its employees. But when a motto or guiding principal is arrived at following the process of a stated mission and vision statement, the collective effort provides a common destination. To help you, look for additional information at www.missionvisionstatement.com on how leadership, management, and individuals best use mission and vision statements.