Mission Statements: Purity and Problem

Mission statements should strike the balance between what I call a purity definition:

  • What is the product are you specifically trying to make? Your purity definition should be specific enough that your team has an outline of the first deliverable minimum lovable product, and yet open enough that they can innovate on the general concept.

and a problem definition

  • What is the essence of the problem you are trying to solve? Your problem definition should be comprehensive enough that an entire suite of products in your area is available but specific enough to provide a framework of constraints to push against.

When it works you have the strategic definition with a tactical approach all encompassed in a simple sentence or two. When it has either purity or problem definitions, but not both, you are locked into an inflexible solution with no impetus for innovation or you lack an actionable approach to realize your vision.

Keeping all of this in mind we should be able to craft a mission statement that defines both who you are as a company and who you hope to become.