Mission Statements and Management by Objectives

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Mission Statements and Management by Objectives
Paul Tonks, Manager, United Kingdom

Many organisations have a mission statement that tries to encapsulate the overall strategic management of their company.
Such statements are designed to implicitly state the organisations objectives in the broader sense. Yet this often fails to capture the true meaning behind the meaning of 'mission'.
A mission is an objective - that needs to be managed. Therefore it should be specific to elements that make up the whole; thus flexible, dynamic and responsive to both the internal and external environment.
Each mission needs a main effort - an overriding factor that underpins the purpose of the mission. This should be communicated to all those involved - it is the desired outcome that must be achieved.
Expressed in this manner the objectives are clear, unambiguous and the employees are told what needs to be achieved not how to achieve them; thus encouraging innovation, flair and problems solving (akin to the organisational learning approach).

Mission Statements and Mbo
Paul Tonks' evaluation makes sense except for the aspect where he stated that the employees need not be told how to achieve organisational objectives. I believe that there IS a need for management and the workforce to agree on HOW objectives are to be achieved to avoid working at cross-purposes.



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