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Live Your Mission, Don't State It

| March 22, 2011

by Jim Bruce

On March 15,2011 Harvard Business Review’s Management Tip of the Day was “Live Your Mission, Don’t State It“.  Two sentences – “A mission statement is an abstraction.  An organization on a mission is inspiring.” – caught my eye in this summary of Dan Pallotta’s HBR blog entry “Do You Have a Mission Statement, or Are You on a Mission?“.

Pallotta’s point is that too often a mission statement is “nothing less than careful jargon.  Slap the title ‘Mission Statement’ on any of those [example statements] and you’ve really communicated a sense of missionless.”  I suspect that two often we in IT are guilty of doing just this.  We are too often focused on completeness, not being too assertive, being correct, etc. that we end up with a statement that is, well, void of clarity and not being actionable.

So, my question for you is what mission are you on?  Are you communicating it to your team, and your clients, in a language that is actionable?  Are your behavior’s supporting it?

You may want to give this some of your critical thinking time today.


Have a great week!  .  .  .  .     jim