Chapter 4 From Our Upcoming Book “12 Months to Maximum Business Performance”

At some point we will be releasing our book, “12 Months to Maximum Business Performance”.  But we don’t think you should have to wait. Many of the principles discussed in this book can be applied to your business right now.  Therefore we are releasing, for the benefit of our business community, chapters from the book as it is being written and revised.

Chapter 4

Phase I: Build a Solid Foundation[ME1] 

What We Try to Accomplish This Phase

The first phase of creating a strong company is devoted to building a solid foundation.  Business owners sometimes go awry by adventuring into more conceptual aspects of the business, such as partnering or distribution systems, while ignoring the foundational areas which will be discussed in this chapter.

We start with Your Products and Customers are Defined.  Sounds simple enough and it is, but worth a read nonetheless because too many businesses don’t do a good job with the last word in that sentence, “Defined”.

Next, we move onto Your Mission Statements are Impressive. In this chapter you’ll not only hear why I think you should have them, but also how to construct good ones.  If you’re wondering why I use the plural for mission statements, it’s because there are five types of mission statements.  Whether you should have one of those five, all of them, or somewhere in between is something you’ll determine in that chapter.

Finally, we’ll come to Your Marketing Plan Excites Everyone.  Do you have a Marketing Plan? Most smaller businesses don’t.  Instead, they take advantage of marketing and advertising opportunities as they come along.  Sounds reasonable, but when we discuss marketing plans, you’ll see how much is to be gained by having an annual or semi-annual planning process to create a formal Marketing Plan.  I’ve italicized the word formal because the Marketing Plan is more than a document; it’s a process.

 [ME1]mon2 1/18/20 Reviewed:rc 1/25/20

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Why Don’t Smaller Businesses Have Mission Statements?


Corporations Have Mission Statements but Smaller Businesses Don’t

Every week I meet with the heads of publicly held corporations and they all have a Mission Statement. I also analyze smaller businesses, private ones, including Mom & Pops. And none (well almost none) have a Mission Statement. Why is this?

Why do Smaller Business Lack Mission Statements?

The quick answer is “Who Knows?”. But it’s not hard to take some educated guesses. Before I give those guesses, let me define mission statements. In our performance enhancement strategy Your Mission Statements are Impressive, we discuss the merits of 5 mission statements, including the traditional Mission Statement. Here, I will use Mission Statement to denote the traditional one, and mission statements to denote the class of 5 possible types of mission statements. Incidentally, those 5 are Mission Statement, Profile Statement, Corporate Mantra, Vision Statement and Statement of Social Values. But we won’t be going into those.

Why Should Smaller Businesses Have Mission Statements?

For a few reasons smaller businesses should have mission statements.

  • Much of the time your customer doesn’t know what you can do for them. Having a mission statement helps clarify why you are in existence for them
  • Your competitors don’t have them. You’ll immediately seem special compared to the rest.
  • You increase your Corporate Presence. In general, people trust larger companies better than small ones. Since large companies have mission statements and small ones don’t, the logic is simple
  • It helps you grow. At Performance Business Design we never say small business. Thinking small results in stagnation. Thinking big can result in growth. So, acting as the larger businesses do will help you become large yourself. Similar to “think and act like a skinny person will help you lose weight”.

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