Learn how to create a meaningful family mission statement and discover why it’s an important and worthwhile family activity!
Earlier this month, my family and I had the incredible opportunity to attend the Family Forward conference in Orlando, Florida (more to come on that soon!) where one of the sponsors and speakers was Kalli Sampson from Franklin Covey’s The Leader in Me program. Kalli’s workshop focused on The Seven Habits of Highly Effective people and how those habits translate into our family, communication, and the ways in which we interact with each other. She led our group in several interactive exercises…
(including a dance party!)
…that clearly demonstrated some of these key principles and ideas, and she also spoke with us about creating a family mission statement.
According to author Stephen Covey, “Creating and integrating an empowering personal mission statement is one of the most important investments we can make.”
A personal mission statement is a way to express your goals, principles, and values in writing, and a family mission statement is very similar in purpose. A family mission statement not only reflects who your family is but also who you desire to become.
A well-crafted mission statement will help your family come together with unified goals and values, express yourselves more clearly, and guide you as you make decisions in every aspect of your life. By the time the workshop was over, each one of my family members had a head full of ideas that they couldn’t wait to get on to paper!
Crafting a mission statement doesn’t have to happen overnight, and in fact, it should take you awhile to explore all of the ideas and options that you wish to include in your family mission statement! We worked our way through the Franklin Covey Interactive Family Mission Statement Builder, but we took things a step further and brought our ideas offline and on to the wall for a more thorough discussion.
The Interactive Family Mission Statement Builder includes exercises and discussion questions for ten different areas of focus – Performance, Passion, Helping, Contribution, Conscience, Influence, Ideals, Principles, Balance (physical, spiritual, mental, and social/emotional), and Vision. For our family’s first mission statement, we wanted something simple and concise, so we chose three of these areas to focus on – Ideals, Principles, and Influence. We will continue to revisit our mission statement from time-to-time as our children grow and our family evolves, and I am sure that one day our mission statement will likely be much longer to incorporate all of the areas of focus!
One by one, we went up to a large sheet of white paper on the wall and answered the question, “If our home could be filled with only one emotion, what would it be?” After we had each written one word, we took turns adding more emotions that we felt were important to us. My oldest son started us off with the word JOY.
My youngest added HAPPINESS, “Even though I know that’s pretty much the same as JOY, I really like that one!”
My middle son wanted us to know how much he values a home that’s filled with humor and laughter.
Everyone was having such a good time that we decided to work on our Principles sheet that same evening!
“What are the principles that we want our family to operate on?” Our six-year-old started us off with one of my favorite principles – RESPECT. I couldn’t think of a better answer to kick off this question!
With every new word that was added to the list, we learned more about each other and the qualities, characteristics, and vision that we value in our lives. It was an incredible family bonding experience!
We spoke about Influence over dinner the next few nights, discussing the questions, “What do we want people to honestly say about our family? People view our family as: ______________” The more that we spoke about it, the more that we realized that the things we hoped other people would see and say about us were the same things that we wanted to experience and fill our home – the happiness, love, support, and respect that we show to one another.
After a few nights of discovering a recurring theme in our key phrases, ideas, and values, we drafted our family mission statement:
I wanted to send a huge shout out of gratitude to Franklin Covey and The Leader in Me for being such an awesome and inspiring conference sponsor at Family Forward! My family thoroughly enjoyed the workshops, and we brought home so much more than I ever could have imagined from it! THANK YOU!
For more information, be sure to check out the Interactive Family Mission Statement Builder along with How to Create Your Family Mission Statment in 3 Easy Steps!