It sounds like an easy question, but it requires you to think deeply about what your purpose in life is and what your values are. Even if you want to define your professional mission only, you cannot do it without the personal YOU.
Because it is difficult to do this on one’s own, I participate in the Mission Identification Open Challenge offered by Tomorrow’s University. (Check out this new and innovative University!)
But why is a mission statement important?
A mission statement can help you
- find your direction,
- focus on prioritise and help you not get lost in the sea of information and opportunities,
- make decisions while staying true to your purpose and values.
Why did I participate in a challenge?
During my partial sabbatical, I felt I needed clarity about where I was going in my life, and what I wanted to achieve. I think it’s important to think about this regularly. Sabbaticals are a great time to do this.
I had a kind of a mission statement before, but it wasn’t really thought through systematically, and kind of sounded technical. It didn’t truly reflect what my purpose is and wasn’t filtered through my values, at least not consciously. I also hadn’t asked for or received feedback on it.
Having a small group of people all working on their mission statements to give and receive feedback while working through different iterations was invaluable.
What is my mission statement?
As part of the challenge, we were asked to share our mission statement and seek feedback outside the group. I decided to share mine on Linkedin.
Do you have a mission in life❓
I have been thinking about what mine is ?
I was a long process. I wanted to find out what really drives me, what I believe in. This is what I settled on:
?Humanising learning with immersive and emerging technologies?
…by conducting research and developing meaningful, sustainable, social and experiential ways of learning.
(I got into a bit more detail in About in my Profile if you are interested.)
?Thank you for helping me think through this Thomas Funke and the Fall 2022 Mission Identification Open Challenge cohort at Tomorrow‘s University.
What do you think? Does it reflect what I stand for from what you know about me?
Do you have a mission statement? What is it?
How will I commit to my mission statement?
A mission statement, especially if it is really tied to your purpose and values and shared publicly is quite serious business. Each time before accepting work, for example, you will have to ask yourself whether it aligns with your mission statement. Are you ready to reject work if it doesn’t? Your network, clients, family and friends can also notice whether what you are saying in your mission statement and actually doing are aligned. You can and should, of course, change your mission statement at different stages of your personal or professional life, but changing it frequently will mean (in most cases) you either haven’t thought it through carefully enough, or you are not taking it seriously.
So how will I make sure this challenge doesn’t become just an exercise? At the end of the challenge, we were all asked how we will commit to our mission statement. One way of doing this is to include it into weekly planning sessions and reflections. I’m going to do this by following what one challenge participant said he would ask himself at the beginning and end of each week the following questions:
What will I do this week that will help achieve my mission?
What did I do this week to achieve my mission?
Upon completion of this challenge the learner was introduced to the essentials of finding their purpose, developing their own personal mission statement, and relating it to existing company mission statements. They shared, collected feedback on, and refined their mission statement to a point where it can support them in navigating their further path through life.Tomorrow University of Applied Sciences
Over to you! What is your mission statement? You can comment below or on my Linkedin post.