Personal Mission Statement In A Nutshell

A personal mission statement clarifies what is important in life to an individual. A personal mission statement is a written statement of purpose that allows individuals to define their calling in life. It helps clarify goals, values, beliefs, or passions, communicate them, and better execute a personal growth strategy.

Definition and PurposeA personal mission statement clarifies an individual’s purpose in life, helping define goals, values, beliefs, and passions. It guides decision-making and personal growth.Personal mission statements serve as guiding principles, aiding in goal setting and intentional living.
Importance– Provides Clarity – Enables Communication – Supports ExecutionPersonal mission statements offer clarity, enhance communication, and assist in executing personal growth plans.
Crafting a Personal Mission Statement– Elements – Use for Building a Brand – Steps to WritingCrafting a statement involves identifying values, recognizing branding potential, and following specific steps for clarity.
Notable ExamplesExamples from well-known individuals showcasing diverse mission statements.These examples demonstrate the variety of personal missions, from innovation and leadership to compassion and justice.
Components of a Personal Mission StatementKey components, including skills, personality traits, and values, that help define one’s mission.Dan Miller’s framework highlights essential components to provide clarity on motivations and desired achievements.
Significance of Personal Mission Statements– Define Individual Identity – Guiding Principles – Intentional LivingPersonal mission statements define identity, act as guiding principles, and promote intentional living aligned with values.
Examples from Celebrities and Business FiguresReal-world examples from notable individuals in various fields, revealing the diversity of personal missions.Celebrities and business figures use personal mission statements to express their purpose and aspirations.
Personal Mission Statement TemplatesHypothetical templates illustrating how mission statements can be structured in different contexts.Templates offer practical examples for crafting personal mission statements tailored to individual aspirations.

Craft your Statement of Purpose

Understanding a personal mission statement

Most statements incorporate the following elements:

  • Goals, values, beliefs, or passions.
  • Personal, professional, or desired attributes.
  • Past achievements, awards, or honors.

Personal mission statements are often associated with building a brand.

The individual can use their mission statement as a filter to determine whether new opportunities are aligned with their brand.

Ultimately, this makes personal and professional life decisions much easier to make and increases the odds of success.

Writing a personal mission statement

Developing a personal mission statement can be difficult for some because it requires a certain level of introspection.

One must think deeply about what is important to them, all the while remaining authentic and honest about their desires.

To make the process easier, follow these steps:

Identify past successes

Brainstorm past examples of personal success at work, home, or in the community. Are there any common themes?

A product innovation specialist who enjoys managing fundraising events may classify creative problem solving as a common theme.

Identify core values

Who are you and what are your priorities in life? Are you creative, compassionate, positive, analytical, or a decision-maker? If you are struggling to describe yourself, ask others to describe you.

From the list of values, choose the five that are most important. Finally, choose one value that resonates with you most deeply.

Identify contributions

Theoretically, how could you contribute to a work, family, or community scenario in a meaningful way? Use values and past successes as a guide.

Identify goals

While you should make a list of short and long-term goals, more ambitious long-term goals are more likely to result in motivation and purpose.

Write the mission statement

Here, brevity is important – ensure that the statement is one to two sentences at most.

Examples of notable personal mission statements

For further inspiration, consider the following examples from notable leaders:

  • Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla – “If something is important enough you should try, even if the probable outcome is failure.
  • Oprah Winfrey, founder of the Oprah Winfrey Network – “To be a teacher. And to be known for inspiring my students to be more than they thought they could be.
  • Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group – “To have fun in my journey through life and learn from my mistakes.
  • Denise Morrison, CEO of Campbell Soup Company – “To serve as a leader, live a balanced life, and apply ethical principles to make a significant difference.

Other personal mission statement examples

As we saw, personal mission statements encourage individuals to clarify their values, objectives, and what is otherwise important to them.

They define who the individual is as a person, or in a work context, who they represent as a team member or employee.

According to career coach and author Dan Miller, personal mission statements should be comprised of three main components:

  1. The individual’s skills, abilities, or competencies. In other words, what they like to do.
  2. Personality traits that define how the individual prefers to operate, and
  3. Their values, passions, and aspirations. These provide clarity on what motivates them and why they want to excel at something.

Personal mission statements that are authentic and representative of the individual can serve as that person’s compass as they live their lives or make important decisions.

Successful people utilize mission statements to record their lofty but achievable intentions and ensure that they act in accordance with their values more often than not.

Personal mission statements of celebrities and business identities

To cement the idea of a personal mission statement in your mind, let’s list a few real-world examples from well-known individuals in life and business:

  • Walt Disney – “To make people happy.
  • Will Smith – “Improve lives. The concept of improving lives runs through the center of everything I do.
  • Mahatma Gandhi – “I shall not fear anyone on Earth. I shall fear only God. I shall not bear ill will toward anyone. I shall not submit to injustice from anyone. I shall conquer untruth by truth. And in resisting untruth, I shall put up with all suffering.
  • Maya Angelou – “To do more than survive, but to grow and live with passion, while meeting life with compassion, humor, and style.
  • Joel Manby (CEO of Herschend Family Entertainment) – “Love God and others.”
  • Malala Yousafzai (Nobel Prize laureate) – “I want to serve the people. And I want every girl, every child to be educated.
  • Jeffrey Madden (Senior VP at RMB Capital) – “Embrace something bigger than yourself. Continually improve your skills. Inspire others to achieve great things and make the world a better place. This is how the quiet humble person leaves their mark.

Personal mission statements templates

To conclude, we will describe some hypothetical personal mission statements that suit several different contexts.

Example 1

My mission in life is to start my own family and keep at the forefront of my mind that whatever I do now will affect them later. As a result, I will strive to engage in activities that will best benefit my future. In this future, I would also like to buy a farm and become a children’s therapist that uses animals as a restorative technique. 

Example 2

To offer an unparalleled level of customer service in my industry that will allow me to build a loyal customer base. As I grow as a person and climb the corporate ladder, I will return the favor to those in need and give back to the community.

Example 3

My objective is to establish the most prestigious advertising firm in Los Angeles from the ground up. With decades of industry experience, I recognize the importance of good ideas, hard work, and an established network of industry contacts. Moving forward, I will spend at least three hours per day working on this mission and do whatever it takes to see it through. I resolve to push through periods of low motivation, self-doubt, and criticism.

Example 4

To become the go-to expert for all things SEO and become one of the industry’s highest-paid individuals. This will be accomplished with a suite of tools that make SEO less expensive and more efficient. I will also devote time to creating an extensive library of explainer videos that makes SEO and its concepts more accessible to webmasters. Once I am in a position to employ staff, I will write a corporate vision statement to create a company culture that best reflect my personal values

Key takeaways

  • A personal mission statement is a written statement of purpose that helps an individual clarify what is important to them.
  • A personal mission statement clarifies the attributes that make up a personal brand. These attributes filter out personal or professional opportunities that are unlikely to result in fulfillment or success.
  • Crafting a personal mission statement requires introspection and deep thinking. Those who find this process difficult can ask friends or family for advice. They can also take inspiration from the mission statements of successful leaders.
  • Personal mission statements encourage individuals to clarify their values, objectives, and what is otherwise important to them.
  • Nobel Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai’s personal mission statement is focused on education for children and service to God, while Will Smith’s statement reminds him to prioritize improving lives.
  • While most use personal mission statements to set meaningful goals or clarify how they can live more intentionally, the examples of Mahatma Gandhi and Jeffrey Madden show they can also be more philosophical or poetic. 

Key Highlights

  • Definition and Purpose: A personal mission statement is a written declaration of an individual’s purpose in life. It helps clarify personal goals, values, beliefs, passions, and attributes. It serves as a guide for making decisions and executing personal growth strategies.
  • Importance of Personal Mission Statements:
    • Provides Clarity: Helps individuals define their calling, values, and objectives.
    • Communication: Enables effective communication of one’s goals and intentions.
    • Execution: Assists in executing a personal growth strategy aligned with the mission.
  • Crafting a Personal Mission Statement:
    • Elements: Typically includes goals, values, beliefs, passions, desired attributes, and past achievements.
    • Use for Building a Brand: Personal mission statements can be used as a filter to align new opportunities with one’s personal brand, making decision-making easier and increasing the chances of success.
  • Steps to Writing a Personal Mission Statement:
    • Identify past successes to uncover common themes.
    • Identify core values that define an individual’s priorities.
    • Identify potential contributions to work, family, or community scenarios.
    • Set short and long-term goals to provide motivation and purpose.
    • Write a concise mission statement that captures the essence of one’s purpose.
  • Notable Examples of Personal Mission Statements:
    • Elon Musk: “If something is important enough, you should try, even if the probable outcome is failure.”
    • Oprah Winfrey: “To be a teacher and inspire students to be more than they thought they could be.”
    • Richard Branson: “To have fun in my journey through life and learn from my mistakes.”
    • Denise Morrison: “To serve as a leader, live a balanced life, and make a significant difference.”
  • Components of a Personal Mission Statement: According to career coach Dan Miller, personal mission statements should include skills, personality traits, and values to provide clarity on motivations and desired achievements.
  • Significance of Personal Mission Statements:
    • Define Individual Identity: Personal mission statements reflect an individual’s values, objectives, and priorities.
    • Guiding Principles: They act as a compass for making important life decisions.
    • Intentional Living: Mission statements promote intentional actions aligned with values.
  • Examples from Celebrities and Business Figures:
    • Walt Disney: “To make people happy.”
    • Will Smith: “Improve lives. The concept of improving lives runs through the center of everything I do.”
    • Mahatma Gandhi: Statement on conquering untruth with truth and resisting injustice.
    • Maya Angelou: “To grow and live with passion, compassion, humor, and style.”
  • Personal Mission Statement Templates:
    • Provides hypothetical examples to illustrate how personal mission statements can be structured.

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FourWeekMBA Business Toolbox

Business Engineering


Tech Business Model Template

A tech business model is made of four main components: value model (value propositions, missionvision), technological model (R&D management), distribution model (sales and marketing organizational structure), and financial model (revenue modeling, cost structure, profitability and cash generation/management). Those elements coming together can serve as the basis to build a solid tech business model.

Web3 Business Model Template

A Blockchain Business Model according to the FourWeekMBA framework is made of four main components: Value Model (Core Philosophy, Core Values and Value Propositions for the key stakeholders), Blockchain Model (Protocol Rules, Network Shape and Applications Layer/Ecosystem), Distribution Model (the key channels amplifying the protocol and its communities), and the Economic Model (the dynamics/incentives through which protocol players make money). Those elements coming together can serve as the basis to build and analyze a solid Blockchain Business Model.

Asymmetric Business Models

In an asymmetric business model, the organization doesn’t monetize the user directly, but it leverages the data users provide coupled with technology, thus have a key customer pay to sustain the core asset. For example, Google makes money by leveraging users’ data, combined with its algorithms sold to advertisers for visibility.

Business Competition

In a business world driven by technology and digitalization, competition is much more fluid, as innovation becomes a bottom-up approach that can come from anywhere. Thus, making it much harder to define the boundaries of existing markets. Therefore, a proper business competition analysis looks at customer, technology, distribution, and financial model overlaps. While at the same time looking at future potential intersections among industries that in the short-term seem unrelated.

Technological Modeling

Technological modeling is a discipline to provide the basis for companies to sustain innovation, thus developing incremental products. While also looking at breakthrough innovative products that can pave the way for long-term success. In a sort of Barbell Strategy, technological modeling suggests having a two-sided approach, on the one hand, to keep sustaining continuous innovation as a core part of the business model. On the other hand, it places bets on future developments that have the potential to break through and take a leap forward.

Transitional Business Models

A transitional business model is used by companies to enter a market (usually a niche) to gain initial traction and prove the idea is sound. The transitional business model helps the company secure the needed capital while having a reality check. It helps shape the long-term vision and a scalable business model.

Minimum Viable Audience

The minimum viable audience (MVA) represents the smallest possible audience that can sustain your business as you get it started from a microniche (the smallest subset of a market). The main aspect of the MVA is to zoom into existing markets to find those people which needs are unmet by existing players.

Business Scaling

Business scaling is the process of transformation of a business as the product is validated by wider and wider market segments. Business scaling is about creating traction for a product that fits a small market segment. As the product is validated it becomes critical to build a viable business model. And as the product is offered at wider and wider market segments, it’s important to align product, business model, and organizational design, to enable wider and wider scale.

Market Expansion Theory

The market expansion consists in providing a product or service to a broader portion of an existing market or perhaps expanding that market. Or yet, market expansions can be about creating a whole new market. At each step, as a result, a company scales together with the market covered.



Asymmetric Betting


Growth Matrix

In the FourWeekMBA growth matrix, you can apply growth for existing customers by tackling the same problems (gain mode). Or by tackling existing problems, for new customers (expand mode). Or by tackling new problems for existing customers (extend mode). Or perhaps by tackling whole new problems for new customers (reinvent mode).

Revenue Streams Matrix

In the FourWeekMBA Revenue Streams Matrix, revenue streams are classified according to the kind of interactions the business has with its key customers. The first dimension is the “Frequency” of interaction with the key customer. As the second dimension, there is the “Ownership” of the interaction with the key customer.

Pricing Strategies

A pricing strategy or model helps companies find the pricing formula in fit with their business models. Thus aligning the customer needs with the product type while trying to enable profitability for the company. A good pricing strategy aligns the customer with the company’s long term financial sustainability to build a solid business model.

Blitzscaling Canvas

The Blitzscaling business model canvas is based on the concept of Blitzscaling, a process of massive growth under uncertainty that prioritizes speed over efficiency, and focuses on market domination to create a first-scaler advantage in a scenario of uncertainty.

Business Analysis Framework

Business analysis is a research discipline that helps drive change within an organization by identifying the key elements and processes that drive value. Business analysis can also be used to identify new business opportunities or take advantage of existing business opportunities to grow your business in the marketplace.

Digital Marketing Circle

digital channel is a marketing channel, part of a distribution strategy, helping an organization to reach its potential customers via electronic means. Several digital marketing channels are usually divided into organic and paid channels. Some organic channels are SEO, SMO, email marketing. And some paid channels comprise SEM, SMM, and display advertising.

North Star Metric

A north star metric (NSM) is any metric a company focuses on to achieve growth. A north star metric is usually a key component of an effective growth hacking strategy, as it simplifies the whole strategy, making it simpler to execute at high speed. Usually, when picking up a North Start Metric, it’s critical to avoid vanity metrics (those who do not really impact the business) and instead find a metric that really matters for the business growth.

ICE Scoring

The ICE Scoring Model is an agile methodology that prioritizes features using data according to impact, confidence, and ease of implementation. The ICE Scoring Model was initially created by author and growth expert Sean Ellis to help companies expand. Today, the model is broadly used to prioritize projects, features, initiatives, and rollouts. It is ideally suited for early-stage product development where there is a continuous flow of ideas and momentum must be maintained.

Virtuous Cycle

The virtuous cycle is a positive loop or a set of positive loops that trigger a non-linear growth. Indeed, in the context of digital platforms, virtuous cycles – also defined as flywheel models – help companies capture more market shares by accelerating growth. The classic example is Amazon’s lower prices driving more consumers, driving more sellers, thus improving variety and convenience, thus accelerating growth.

Growth Matrix

In the FourWeekMBA growth matrix, you can apply growth for existing customers by tackling the same problems (gain mode). Or by tackling existing problems, for new customers (expand mode). Or by tackling new problems for existing customers (extend mode). Or perhaps by tackling whole new problems for new customers (reinvent mode).

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Other resources for your business:

Amazon Business Model, Epic Games Business Model, Etsy Business Model, Uber Business Model, Uber Eats Business Model, DoorDash Business Model.

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