Clarifying Values, Vision and Mission in a Family Business

Three ingredients that lay the foundation for a truly viable multigenerational family business are Values, Vision and Mission. These vital elements will ensure familial harmony and balance and sustain the business through volatile economic conditions, cut-throat demands of the marketplace, and the diverse expectations and evolving work styles of upcoming generations.

Most companies err when defining the three elements by focusing excessively on private interests. The Values, Vision and Mission should inspire and meaningfully engage their employees and other stakeholders.   


People, businesses and organizations operate on a comprehensive Values system, such system being a sum total of various elements. In comparison, some values may be more fundamental or dynamic in nature. These core Values actively influence the way a business behaves and form the basis of a company’s Vision and Mission.


The Vision throws light on the long-term purpose of a company or organization and is based on the Values it espouses. A good Vision statement focuses outwardly and speaks in terms of benefit to the audience.


A Mission statement is about something to be accomplished. One way to recognize the difference between a Vision and a Mission statement is that a Vision is something you see and a Mission is defined by the action taken to move towards the Vision.

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