Creating meaningful mission, vision and values statements

Creating meaningful mission, vision and values statements

Developing mission, vision and values statements for your practice is about more than making up a few sentences so you’ll have something pithy to put on your website and hang in little frames around the office. The process of creating these three statements is a great exercise for your entire team to do together. It will focus attention on the core of what your practice offers, what the organization stands for, and what you hope to achieve moving forward. Let’s explore the three statements:

  1. Mission. Your mission statement is about what you do, for whom, and how. A clear mission can help you remember why you come to work each day and keep you on track when evaluating opportunities and facing challenges in your practice. Example: Our mission is to provide high-quality care, at a reasonable cost with a level of service that patients will remember.
  2. Vision. Your vision statement conveys what you hope to achieve and the impact you hope to have as an organization. It’s your dream for what is possible. Think big and bold on this one. Example: Our vision is for a community where everyone enjoys optimal health, and we aim to be a vital part of making that a reality.
  3. Values. Your values statement reflects the principles of your practice-what you stand for, what matters to you and how you carry out your mission and realize your vision. Example: We work as a team, communicate openly, treat one another with respect and show compassion for all patients.

To develop your three statements, schedule a short practice retreat (or a long staff meeting) so you have time to sink your teeth into the process. You may wish to work on your statements over the course of several meetings. Here are seven questions for your team to consider when creating your statements. These should jump-start a lively and meaningful discussion.

  1. Who do we serve?
  2. Why do we open our doors each morning?
  3. What do we do better than almost anyone?
  4. What do patients value about us?
  5. What do we stand for?
  6. How can we have the greatest impact? 7. How do we wish to be seen by others?

Once you have your statements finalized, you can decide how you want to display them. Perhaps you’ll publish them on your website, post them tastefully in strategic locations around the office and use them in advertising and print materials. You should also keep your mission, vision and values statements front and center when making significant decisions in the practice such as who to hire, with whom to partner and do business and what to include when updating your business and marketing plans. In other words, your statements should “live” and guide your day-to-day and long-term choices and actions.