Are You Mission-Focused?

"Why don't you know?"

When targeting a company in your job search, you have to pay attention to the information that is whizzing by you:

  • what they are doing,
  • what they are tweeting,
  • what they are saying in press releases and marketing materials,
  • what is reported about them in the media,
  • what products they sell currently,
  • who buys their products,
  • what new products are in development,
  • who key people in the company are,
  • if there have been recent changes in management or other areas,
  • what companies they have bought,
  • if there has been any other growth,
  • whether they have been recently acquired…

(Just to name a few things.) 🙂

It can be a lot of work just to keep up with the current events of a company, especially if it’s one of significant size. But are you finding yourself getting so caught up with the various information and stats — the “what,” “how much,” and “who” of an organization — that you forget about the “why?”

Why do they exist?

The answer to this question can be found in a nice, neat package: the company’s mission statement.

Have you paid much attention to the mission statement? Sure, you may have discovered it as you looked at the website, but have you really analyzed it? You should because, in the final analysis, that mission is the guiding force for everything they do. The goals and objectives they set for themselves in their annual plans all filter back to the mission, the overarching purpose for their existence.

As a candidate for an opening with a company, think about your unique value proposition. How can that be used to help a company fulfill its mission? Are you prepared to demonstrate how your skills can be an asset toward what they are trying to achieve? If you aren’t already putting this into your résumé and cover letter, you should!

Something else to think about: would you be able to give a general overview of what comprises the mission statement if asked in an interview? That actually happened to someone I worked with; fortunately, he knew their mission statement and was able to give a good answer to that question.

If you’re thinking, “Ugh, another thing to have to remember,” stop right there. A company that places that much weight on its mission will have a a very clear direction for its efforts and will greatly value those who are able to help them achieve it. It actually makes the whole job seeking process easier because you know exactly what they need. Plus, it would be very cool to work for a company that embraces their values fully.

Do you really get to know a company’s mission statement when targeting prospective employers?

Image courtesy of kylepheland

Does this article resonate with you? Imagine what could happen if I was working for you and your career!

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