The starting point of strategic planning is the identification and formulation of the organization’s goals. In this case, a general goal is usually distinguished, which is defined as a mission, and specific goals of a lower level. So, what is the difference between these concepts? Here is more about it.

Formation of a strategic vision, and mission of enterprises

Strategic management is a complex management process that consists in defining a strategic vision and mission, conducting analytical research, and identifying industry and enterprise development trends to justify a future strategy and a set of measures for its implementation.

The development of an organization’s strategy begins with the formation of a vision and the choice of a direction for development. The main thing that can be achieved by long-term strategic planning is a clear vision of the future, in which some managerial problems may seem insignificant and momentary, as well as other problems that are not visible in the daily “churn”.

What is a vision?

Vision is essential for effective leadership and responsible decision-making. A modern manager cannot act effectively as a leader or a manager who determines a strategy without a firm understanding of the essence and prospects for the development of his business, an understanding of what to strive for, how the situation in the industry will change in the future and how this change will affect the position of the enterprise after 5–10 years.

Thus, the strategic vision is the concentrated opinion of the management regarding the priority areas of development, areas of activity, and customer needs, as well as the possible competitive positions of the enterprise in the long term. If the management does not calculate the options for future situations, the organization misses the existing market opportunities and loses its competitive advantages. Companies that do not have a strategic vision do not know what market position they should strive to win for themselves. Therefore, a clearly articulated vision is a prerequisite for sustainable strategic leadership in an organization.

The formation of a strategic vision includes 3 components: mission, long-term course, clear statement of the strategic vision.

What is a mission?

The mission explains the essence of the activity, the specifics of the business, and the way the company develops – everything that distinguishes this company from others in this industry. The mission statement contains a description of three elements:

  • The needs of the buyer, that is, what must be satisfied.
  • Groups of buyers, that is, who will be the object of service.
  • Actions, technology, and knowledge, i.e. how the company creates and distributes customer value and satisfies the needs of its customers; the owners of the organization; employees of the organization; consumers; partners; societies

The mission indicates the meaning of the creation of the organization, its purpose, and its role in the general trends in the development of man, society, civilization, and mankind. It should find specific features of the organization that distinguish it from similar organizations operating in the same market segment or performing similar functions. It is clear that it is the mission that becomes not only a way to identify the corporation since it emphasizes its uniqueness, but also the main strategic integrator of the organization’s employees. Besides, the mission contributes to the formation of a common vision of goals by the employees of the organization.

Often the mission and vision are formulated at the same time. The difference between them is not always obvious. We can say that the mission and vision together reflect the collective ambitions of the organization.