Resolution: Write a mission statement and share with stakeholders

January 16, 2018By Focus on the Pharmacy Front End Blog, Independent Pharmacy, Resolutions for Independent Pharmacies

By Mary Hart, for the Resolutions for Independent Pharmacies blog series

If you want to be seen as a true competitor among the big guys, you should look to their business practices to see what they are doing well and where you could learn something you might apply to your own business. Being a small, independent business gives you the advantage of being flexible and it can be easier to make adjustments and implement change.

One thing large companies have that you may not, is a mission statement. You should have one. Here is Walgreens’ mission statement:

To be America's most loved pharmacy-led health, wellbeing and beauty retailer.

How do you begin to write your own mission statement? Start by thinking about what is important to you, the value you bring to your customers and community, and your points of differentiation. Your differentiators could be the personal attention you offer, the quick response, and the small-town feel.Write a mission statement

Your mission statement should be a reflection of your business principles and will give guidance to your employees, ensuring they understand the larger purpose of the store. You also want to share it with your other stakeholders: customers, community, suppliers, peers, etc. Post it in public areas in your store so any visitors will see it and recognize what your store is about. Make sure it is where your staff will see it and learn it, too. You can even use it in your promotional activities to make sure it reaches those important stakeholders.

I remember participating in a 360° Store Assessment years ago for a pharmacy in a small town in Louisiana. Although I don’t recall seeing a mission statement posted anywhere in the store, there was an “unwritten” mission statement that was apparent through the actions of the pharmacist and staff. I know because customers we spoke with kept sharing the same sentiment about how much they felt the pharmacy staff cared about them. Even townspeople we were interacting with for other reasons, once they heard why we were in town, had the same perception of the store. In this instance, a visible mission statement would reinforce what the community concluded on their own.

Writing a mission statement is important. It makes you think about and clearly express what you want your business to be. When you share it with all of your stakeholders, it tells them exactly why you are in business.