Forty nine (i)

My divorce papers came through the morning we’d scheduled to review the company’s mission, vision and values. Not exactly metaphoric, but funny enough. I raised my glass of orange juice in silent salute to Myra, and it was touching to learn she’d done the same, albeit with one of those powder-based concoctions she inflicts on herself.

The management team agreed that our current mission and vision statements said nothing but the utterly obvious in the most generic terms.

No one could recall them because they were pointless. Or is it the other way round? Were they pointless because no one could recall them? Anyway, I won’t repeat them here as their omission won’t injure the storyline.

We worked on the basis that the mission, vision and values should be concise, characteristic and memorable. By characteristic we mean that anyone told the mission and vision should be able to associate them with Attenzi unprompted.

Here’s how they crystallized:

Mission (why does Attenzi exist?)

We work together to create great products that celebrate great food and great cooking to the benefit of everyone involved. And we strive to get more people involved.

Vision (what does Attenzi want to be?)

We will be a truly social business, opening ourselves up to everyone’s talents, knowledge and wisdom to create beautiful products and relevant services.

Values (what’s important to us?)

Integrity – being true to ourselves and each other.

Openness – transparent and inclusive.

Sensitivity – to our stakeholders’ needs, our combined talents and failings, the market’s opportunities and threats.

We aligned the “about us” copy on our website and designed an internal communications program to explain what we were up to and elicit questions and contributions, and ultimately to win everyone’s support for this new way of thinking about our business.