Published on August 25th, 2008 | by Jennifer Kaplan0
The Green Mission Statement
You probably have a mission statement. At a minimum you probably needed one in order write a business plan. But, too often the websites of company’s that sell green products and services bury their mission statement in the deep recesses of their content. It seems standard to prominently display green-themed graphics and customer testimonials about how services surpass expectations and yield cost savings or LEED certification points. What often does not happen, however, is the public sharing of the green mission statement.
It is a missed opportunity not to put it at the forefront of your corporate communications. What should you do with your mission statement? Lots.
A green mission statement can be a critical element of a company’s marketing efforts. I say this because the communication of your greenness can be as valuable an asset to your company as the greenness itself. Any company that deals in green products and services has a de facto green mission. The sustainability mission statement is simply an extension of that, a clear statement of the company’s intentions to mitigate the environmental impacts of the business practices needed in the design, manufacture and distribution of their products and services. It can be broad or go into details about sustainable activities. It is important to share because it is easier to achieve your objectives if stakeholders understand the company’s goals and see that they are realistic and achievable. The mission statement is the first piece of tangible evidence that your business is invested in reducing its impact on the environment.
// A business can set itself apart by communicating its unique commitment to sustainability and each company’s green mission statement will reflect the goals and priorities of their particular objectives. Small businesses may want to communicate the details of their green program to show that they share the values of their customers and are doing good in the community. Starbuck’s environmental mission statement describes their internal commitments, and since their impact on the supply chain is so significant, places emphasis on their role in influencing their partners. Ben & Jerry’s mission statement focuses on a holistic approach to sustainable operations that defines their corporate culture. Whatever direction you take, a well-defined mission statement will help you prioritize your objectives and communicate your intentions.
Although the green mission statement is not created specifically as a marketing device, once you have an environmental mission statement, use it to your advantage by publicly sharing it. At a minimum, post it on your website where people can find it. It deserves a tab on your main navigation bar. Include a link on emails and online newsletters. Your mission statement provides the basis of your competitive advantage so share it.
Photo: Rob Cottingham at www.robcottingham.ca under the Creative Commons License.