A vision statement presents an inspirational vision of a company to guide growth, motivate employees, and connect with consumers. Aside from expressing your company’s goals and aspirations, the vision statement also provides a strategic planning framework to follow as a business. It instructs how you and employees should move forward and ultimately tells you where you want to go as a business. A good vision statement is valuable because it helps set your business’s direction by subtly influencing the decision-making process.
Articulating a powerful vision statement is one of the hallmarks of a strong business leader. You may be inspired to create one when you first start your business. Unlike a mission statement, which presents a company’s driving purpose and is more short term, the vision statement serves as an inspiration and a guide. To help you make an inspiring and useful vision statement, we created a worksheet so you can craft your statement.
17 Great Examples of Vision Statements
1. LinkedIn: “Create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce.”
LinkedIn’s vision correctly states that the modern workforce is global. In doing so, it recognizes an essential truth for employers and employees alike. This statement is particularly useful because it promotes the idea of leveling the playing field not just for LinkedIn team members and users, but also for the entire global workforce.
Stated another way, LinkedIn’s vision statement focuses on allowing everyone to find employment, grow, and advance. It also reminds us that the platform intends to help people generate economic opportunities, which may involve finding a new job, promoting your own business, or connecting with other industry experts.
2. IKEA: “Our vision is to create a better everyday life for many people.”
As a home design brand, IKEA focuses on creating a high quality of life for its customers—precisely what its customers think about when choosing to shop there. By aligning its goals with consumers’ desires, IKEA is signaling that it understands the wants and needs of its customers and that it’s ready to meet those needs.
The vision statement’s focus on the customer is also evident in using “many people” instead of “all people.” In using this language, IKEA demonstrates that it doesn’t need everyone to be loyal customers to succeed—but they are committed to helping those who relate to and appreciate the IKEA lifestyle.
3. Zoom: “Video communications empowering people to accomplish more.”
Zoom’s vision statement is effective because it focuses on its primary product—video communications—and highlights that it can empower users. What’s more, the vision statement speaks directly to Zoom’s typical customers—businesses—by assuring they’ll accomplish more with the help of the platform.
This statement tells customers that the product is to increase productivity and invites business owners to leverage the tool to help its bottom line.
4. Tesla: “To create the most compelling car company of the 21st century by driving the world’s transition to electric vehicles.”
Tesla’s statement is interesting because it doesn’t say what it wants to provide or what it wants to accomplish. And, unlike many vision statements, it doesn’t say it wants to sell—it wants to be compelling.
The goal is not to produce the most high-quality cars or sell the most vehicles. Instead, Tesla wants to inspire people, embolden them, and drive and encourage them. More specifically, the statement doesn’t say it wants to sell cars. It says it wants to drive the transition to electric. Again: encourage, inspire, promote innovation.
5. Southwest Airlines: “To become the world’s most loved, most efficient, and most profitable airline.”
Southwest’s vision statement stands out because it focuses on what the company wants to become. The brand is also putting its customers first with its goal of being the most loved airline while maintaining the importance of making a profit for its shareholders. This puts the focus on both the company’s journey and the customer’s journey.
What’s more, many elements in the vision statement are quantifiable. So when Southwest says it wants to be the most efficient and most profitable airline—leadership can measure these metrics and track how well the company aligns with its vision.
6. Etsy: “Building an Etsy Economy”
In this short vision statement, Etsy creates a new term to strive for, the “Etsy economy.” This statement encompasses both creators and buyers. This vision statement is great because it doesn’t just focus on creating products, but the interaction and relationship between buyer and seller.
7. Habitat for Humanity: “A world where everyone has a decent place to live.”
Here, Habitat for Humanity is thinking worldwide. While it has several divisions around the world, its vision statement brings everyone together.
The second part of the statement “a decent place to live” is an excellent vision for the workers and volunteers. Every home it constructs has the goal of delivering a great place for someone or a family to call home.
8. Google: “To provide access to the world’s information in one click.”
Google’s vision statement is short, simple, and concise. It doesn’t use big words to express the company’s lofty goals.
Instead of using complicated business jargon, the vision statement example is simple enough for a second grader to read and understand. This is important—because even second graders use Google.
9. Facebook: “Connect with friends and the world around you on Facebook.”
Though Facebook has expanded to other social media platforms, like Instagram, its focus has always been on connecting people. This vision statement puts connection front and center and then uses active language to encourage just that.
Additionally, the direct and actionable language puts the onus on the reader, whether it be Facebook employees or users—to connect. This language draws people into Facebook’s online community—in the same way, they’re part of their own communities—by inviting them to experience the world online.
10. McDonald’s: “To move with velocity to drive profitable growth and become an even better McDonald’s serving more customers delicious food each day around the world.”
This vision statement example from McDonald’s has two clear goals: drive profitability and serve more customers. Then, the statement ties the two goals together with the simple act of serving delicious food—every day and around the world.
In a way, the McDonald’s vision statement also takes the onus off the company to improve its food offerings. Customers love the brand’s food, and as long as it stays delicious, they’re following their vision. For that reason, the company’s real goal is to take that food and serve it to an ever-growing number of customers.
11. Patagonia: “Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.”
This vision statement is significant because it speaks directly to consumers. What’s more, it’s tailored around Patagonia’s more conscientious customers. They are more likely to pay top dollar for high quality, fair trade, and more sustainable products.
Using inspirational language and focusing on the environmental crisis, Patagonia’s vision statement targets both customers and employees who care deeply about the environment.
12. Berkshire Hathaway: “Our vision is to be the provider of choice in our communities for comprehensive real estate and financial solutions.”
This vision statement is just like the company it describes—it doesn’t leave anything out. It says precisely what Berkshire Hathaway wants to be, for whom, and in what sectors. Like the company’s investments, the vision statement doesn’t pigeonhole. Instead, it allows the company to be comprehensive and grow along with the market.
13. Amazon: “To be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.”
Amazon’s vision statement is useful because it puts the company’s priorities front and center. First, the statement mentions the company’s customers twice in a single sentence. Then, it uses actionable terms like “find” and “discover” to show that customers can find and purchase what they want and need.
The idea of being able to find “anything” also underscores the company’s commitment to offering a massive selection of merchandise and making it easily accessible online. Finally, this example stands out from other vision statements because its mention of Earth brings to mind one of its founder’s other endeavors—space travel.
14. Nerdster: “To be a nerd for all your needs.”
This vision statement example is significant because it clearly states who they are, in doing so—how it helps their customers. What’s more, Nerdster isn’t embarrassed or turned off by the fact that they’re nerds.
Instead, it’s plainly stated to draw attention to how the company’s website development services can help customers. And, because this is a vision statement, it goes beyond its current offerings to say Nerdster can be a nerd for ALL client needs.
15. Netflix: “Becoming the best global entertainment distribution service. Licensing entertainment content around the world. Creating markets that are accessible to filmmakers.”
Netflix breaks its vision statement into three parts, each written in the active voice. This statement is especially effective because it uses strong, concise, thought-provoking verbs. What’s more, the statement also puts the focus on content while pushing the idea of expansion and global coverage.
Interestingly, the statement doesn’t say anything about viewers and instead directs its future toward production and making it easier for creators to get their content to market.
16. Human Rights Campaign: “Equality for everyone.”
The Human Rights Campaign’s vision statement is short, simple, and straightforward. Because of that, it also leaves some meaning open to interpretation.
This strategy makes the vision statement even more aspirational because it leaves the organization open to growth and lets readers interpret it how they want. In this way, it both inspires and invites people to support the organization’s efforts.
17. Alzheimer’s Association: “A world without Alzheimer’s disease.”
The Alzheimer’s Association’s vision statement is truly that—a vision. It doesn’t say it wants to pursue its goal. It doesn’t say it wants to inspire people to move toward it. Its vision is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease. Still, how they’ll achieve it and what they do once they get there—they leave open to imagination.
Not only is this a confident vision statement, it’s unabashed as if to say, “This is our vision. It’s not changing. Because it’s that important.”
Because of these characteristics, this vision statement from the Alzheimer’s Association is genuinely aspirational. It is the foundation of the organization’s efforts.
What Makes an Effective Vision Statement?
There are specific characteristics that effective vision statements have in common. Look for these traits when updating your current vision statement or crafting a new one.
- Future-focused. Create a future-focused vision statement by providing the “big picture” and clearly describing what your organization will be like in several years.
- Directional. Vision statements that provide direction can serve as a guide to organizational plans and strategies.
- Specific. An effective vision statement should be clear and focused enough to shape decision-making.
- Relevant and purpose-driven. By reflecting your company’s response to the challenges of the day, a purpose-driven vision statement can motivate your team.
- Values-based. Use your vision statement to describe the specific values that are required to support the organization.
- Challenging. A vision statement can challenge your employees and customers by inspiring them to do great things and achieve a higher level of standards.
- Unique and memorable. Your company’s vision statement will make more of an impact if it highlights what makes your organization different and why it matters.
- Inspiring. Vision statements that inspire employees to commit to a cause are more effective than those that do not.
When it’s time to write your company’s vision statement, don’t worry about making it perfect the first time. Begin a conversation with yourself and envision how you want your business to look in terms of growth, values, contributions to society, and employees. Make a note of the words that trigger the strongest emotions and illustrate your aspirations for the company. Then, craft a truly inspiring vision statement and incorporate it into your business plan.