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Missions That Matter: Association Mission Statement Writing Tips

We’ll go over how to format a mission statement for maximum impact, as well as several other tips that can bring life to your association’s mission. If you’re looking for a way to create a mission that matters, look no further.

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An association is only as powerful as its mission. A bold statement- but one that holds some serious truth. After all, without your mission statement, how would members know what your association is striving towards for its future goals? Would they know what they’re supporting? Would they ever have joined in the first place?

Yes, a mission statement is a clear and concise way to get your point across to members and newcomers while also proving a point about what drives your association forward. With that type of importance and impact, you need to make sure your association’s mission statement is one that hits home with its readers. But is there a perfect way to write a mission statement? What steps can be taken to ensure yours evokes emotion in audiences enough to support your association, help fund its mission, and even sign on as a member?

Let’s go over a few writing tips to help your association’s mission statement page stand out among the rest. We’ll go over how to format a mission statement for maximum impact, as well as several other tips that can bring life to your association’s mission. If you’re looking for a way to create a mission that matters, look no further.

What makes a good mission statement?

A mission statement is pretty self-explanatory: It’s a statement describing the motives and passions behind every move your association makes. It explains why your association exists and how it works to help others with their own passions.

But while that is the definition of a mission statement at its core, there are so many factors that go into a good mission statement. It’s a lot more than listing out your expectations and goals. To start, a good mission statement tells a story. Your audience doesn’t want a bullet point list of what your association wants to accomplish. They want to be told the story of your association, from past to present, and even to a projection of the future. Think about it, which would you rather read: A dry, two sentence statement of what an organization works to promote and produce, or an account of an organization coming together and overcoming obstacles in order to strive towards a stronger community and a brighter future? We think we know the answer.

In addition, a good mission statement also focuses on proper formatting and grammar, making the reading experience for audiences an enjoyable one. You want viewers to get through your  mission statement with ease, focusing on the main points and not getting distracted by any spelling errors or confusing formatting. So, in order to produce a mission statement filled with story telling traits and without grammatical setbacks, here’s what you should focus on.

Cover the basics, but make them interesting

When sitting down to write your association’s mission statement, you want to make sure you cover every basic question someone might have when viewing your web page. This mission statement is a reflection of your association to its audience, so you don’t want them left with unanswered queries by the end of their reading. So, what are some questions that should be covered? Let’s go over the basics. First, you always want to cover why your association exists. That’s going to be the first question on many readers minds, so you want to make sure you address it first and foremost. Once you’ve explained how your association came to be, it’s time to explain what your association does. Let’s be honest, your association does a lot of things. Between advocacy, events and conferences, and even professional workshops and career opportunities, you have a lot to offer members. Be sure to break it down to your most important features to make things easy on your audience. Narrow your “what we do” description down to two or three essential features. This way, if your audience reads your mission statement and wants to know more of the amazing benefits you offer, they can check out your website to find out more. You also want to cover very obvious details like your association’s geographical location, what type of association you are, and who you work for (if necessary). While this information seems obvious, it can often be looked over by many associations. Don’t get lost in all of the details your association has to offer. Cover the basics and build your mission statement up from there.

Paint a picture of your future

Your audience wants to see where exactly your association is taking itself in the future. If they don’t have a picture in mind of your potential, they won’t be able to see where they fit in when it comes to your association’s future goals. Create a projection of where your association would like to be with its mission and its goals. Whether this is through statistical projections, or just a general idea of where you’d like to be within the next 5-10 years. It’s entirely up to your association what kind of picture you’d like to paint for your audience.

However, it’s important to create a future that your members fit into. Your association runs on the power of its membership. With that being said, it’s up to you to tell a story that includes them every step of the way. Be sure to use inclusive language when writing your mission statement. Include sentences that refer to your members and actively show their part in making your association what it is today. For example: “We’re looking forward to a future of change- and we can’t do that without your support!”

If you can show members a place in your association for the future, you can be sure your mission statement will spark an emotion in them and get the member onboarding process on the way.

Review, revise, and revisit!

Once you think you have a great mission statement your audience will understand and enjoy, it’s time to revise and edit your work. You may think your association’s mission statement is perfect and ready to go up on your website, but final edits are always necessary for any piece of content. There could be grammatical errors, run on sentences, or information that doesn’t quite make sense. When you’re writing content, it can be easy to miss mistakes you typically wouldn’t make. Research shows that having an extra pair of eyes revising your work can save you from mistakes you could have made. If possible, have someone else on your association’s team step in and read your mission statement before publishing it. Don’t have anyone to revise your work? Consider stepping away for a few hours or even a day before coming back to edit. This gives you time to reset your  mind and focus in on what you wrote at a later time.

With these writing tips, you’ll be sure to create a mission statement that shares your association’s story and gets the point across at the same time. Don’t let your association’s mission statement blend in with the rest. Make it a story that audiences will remember and come back to in the future- hopefully with membership in mind.