Bombs on Target. For an operational Navy squadron, that’s the answer to the question “Why are we here?” It’s clearly stated, universally understood and actionable at all levels. It’s exactly what our Nation expects us to do when called upon, and it’s completely consistent with the military’s overall mission to “Fight and win our nation’s wars.”
It takes a Team to hit the Mission Target
Is the Mission of your organization that clear, understood, and actionable? As a three-time Commanding Officer, I found that a great way to test this is to set aside the “crisis du jour” and answer three deceptively simple questions:
- What are we here to do?
- Are we getting it done?
- If not, why not?
The answers to those three questions can be very revealing. While most organizations have (or had) a Mission intended to define the organization’s collective purpose or reason for being, few of them translate into crisp organizational action.
Mission statements, like New Year’s resolutions, are well intended, but only mean something if they are accomplished.
It takes tremendous engagement and discipline to energetically reinforce organizational actions that contribute to accomplishing the Mission while consistently minimizing tasks and actions that detract from mission attainment.
Crew11’s approach is centered on the requirements for both Mission awareness throughout the organization and proactive individual action in pursuit of it. The leader’s role is to be the daily caretaker of the mission and to craft a vision that defines what the team wants, and needs to be, to accomplish that Mission…and to enthusiastically live it every day! One boss I had would routinely say ”‘fellas, we’re running this way”, which always referred to tackling goals that resulted in mission success. The focus is on our purpose, not the latest fire to be put out. We work creatively through our strategy for mission success, not reactively.
Crafting an organization’s strategy means defining goals, objectives and tasks that tackle barriers directly related to Mission accomplishment. Employees at all levels must know they are vital to meeting the Mission and that their task engagement in the process is critical – and directly tied to Mission success! It must be a theme that is understood and lived daily. Fostering a climate of focus on mission accomplishment means more than dusting off the Mission statement and rolling it out at new employee orientations. The team must be engaged in open and honest communications, both vertically and horizontally, with a relentless focus on a common Mission.
Is Mission accomplishment your Team’s focus?