Is there a real place for having a sense of mission in the for-profit organization? While mission-driven communications goes to the core of how non-profits operate, its applicability within the market-driven realm has always been rather fuzzy. This is especially true when dealing with intangibles such as core values whose ultimate worth to the organization don’t always line up with the near-term imperatives of the next sales cycle or the current fiscal year.
But a modern company also has to make its way in an evolving set of socio-political circumstances. In the US, the slew of corporate scandals at the turn of the 21st century and the consequent passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act put a lot of companies on the ethical defensive. And among the shields they put up are reconstituted mission statements proclaiming, nay protesting, their adherence to the highest ethical standards.
As to how much of it involves true introspection in the board room or mere smoke-and-mirrors is central to the question of the place for real mission-driven communication in the for-profit company.
1. Should mission-driven communication in today’s corporate setting adopt a strategic (winning minds) or a messianic (winning hearts) tone? Please take into account insights gathered from readings about how it relates to personal and corporate values and behaviors.
2. As strategic communicators, how can we help shape a company’s mission-driven communication in a fundamentally meaningful way, so that it truly becomes strategic rather than just cosmetic?