What’s Your Vision, Mission and Purpose?


Walt Disney. Wal-Mart. The Ritz Carlton. Your gym. All four of these businesses should have a clear vision, mission and purpose statement. I know for a fact that three out of the four do have a statement. I also know that comparing your gym to these globally known organizations may seem like a stretch, but I hope your goal isn’t to be mediocre. If it is, then stop reading now. If it isn’t — if you strive to be the best — let’s continue.

In one of my previous articles, “Why you Should Implement Systems,” I posed the question of whether or not you run a business or simply own your job. That same question is applicable here, but in reference to what you do and what guides your decisions. Regardless of the size of your business, it needs to be run like Disney or Wal-Mart and be guided in the same way. If not, it isn’t a business: It’s your job.

If you want your business to be successful, you must build it to sell. You don’t ever have to sell it, you just have to build it that way. Besides having systems that run your business, you need something that guides what you do and why you do it.

Enter the vision, mission and purpose statements. Three seems like a lot, I know, but without direction, a ship can leave port but will never find its destination. So let’s start with defining them. According to Speculate Growth, they are defined as follows:

  • Vision – a vision is a statement of what you would like to become.
  • Mission – a mission is a statement of how we will accomplish our vision.
  • Purpose – a purpose is a statement of why we exist/reason for being.

With that said, here are examples of each:

  • Wal-Mart’s vision statement – To be the largest and best retail organization of the world.
  • Disney’s mission statement – To be one of the world’s leading producers and providers of entertainment and information.
  • Ritz Carlton’s purpose (motto) statement – “We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen.”

Here are the vision, mission and purpose statements for my own gym, CrossFit 859:

  • Vision statement – To be the best gym in the country.
  • Mission statement – We strive to provide the highest quality fitness experience through providing three key elements:
    •  The best introductory program for new members.
    • The best possible existing member experience.
    • Professional coaching.
  • Purpose Statement – Help people be awesome.

Knowing the difference between the three will help businesses create each statement and then use them to guide decisions, motivate members and clients, and inspire employees. Taking the time to develop them will pay dividends in the future and should be seen as an investment in the present and future of your business.

Now that you’ve been given the keys to the kingdom, go do something about it.

Eric Karls is a founder of CrossFit 859 in Nicholasville, Kentucky. He also helped open CrossFit Fisticuffs in Georgetown, Kentucky, and is the founder/supervisor of Georgetown College CrossFit. Eric can be followed on his personal Facebook or contacted at crossfit859eric@gmail.com.