Personal mission statements should take the place of a personal brand, in my humble opinion.
I’ve had a personal mission statement for many years … it dates back to when my company (Fleishman Hillard) sent me to a Stephen Covey seminar on the 7 Habits of Highly Successful People — must have been 1997 or 1998. In that session, I learned about big rocks and small pebbles (send me a message and I’ll tell you that one if you haven’t ever heard it) and one of the most valuable tools I’ve ever learned…. Create a Personal Mission Statement and live by it.
Here’s mine: Make Every Interaction Count
To me, that means not only with my family and work colleagues, but with the grocer who is helping me a the produce aisle as well as the UPS delivery driver who delivers my packages. It means I am cordial, but beyond that, I try to offer a bit of kindness that is so lacking in the world. Most days, I do well with this mission statement. There are days I fail. And for anyone who knows me and knows the days I have failed at this, I offer my apologies here and now.
But when I do fall down on this, I do pick myself up, remind myself of what that mission statement means to me and try to start again with a fresh perspective.
The reason I think having a personal mission statement is important is that a good mission statement will provide not only the essence of what you stand for, it is actionable. It goes beyond “personal branding,” — even as a marketer, I have a love/hate fest with this concept — it should reflect who you are and even more, who you want to be as a person, not as a commodity, product, sales or service.
If you have a personal mission statement, tweet it out, put it in the comments here, put it on my Facebook account or just tell the world! Being accountable for the change you want to see in this world is a great way to live out the mission you were brought to this planet to achieve!
What is your personal mission statement?