Difference Between Mission and Vision

Difference Between Mission and Vision

You must have heard this too many times – “have a plan for your life”. This is one of the best things you can do for yourself if you wish to make reasonable achievements in life. This applies to even the simplest things around us, as well as the complex ones. It also applies to our relationship with people, education, career, and businesses.

There are different types of plans: the long-term and short-term plans. In other words, you can refer to them as “vision” and “mission”. These two are going to be the focus of this article – their definitions, some examples, and the difference between mission and vision in a tabular illustration.

There are different ways you can compare these two terms, but we’ll narrow down our scope to the corporate world as it relates to business organizations.

Definition of Mission

A mission statement is an official declaration that guides the day-to-day activity of an organization with regards to the values of the establishment. In every setup, there is usually a big picture, as well as a small one. This statement defines the small picture a business wants to achieve in a limited period of time.

The key mission and vision difference that easily comes to mind is that, in this case, there is a time restraint placed on it and it happens in the present. So long as this plan is in motion, the concerned parties are expected to follow the day-to-day activities as outlined by this declaration until the goal is accomplished.

Definition of Vision

A vision statement is defined as a declaration of the fundamental reason for the existence of an establishment. This definition will help you to better answer questions like – “what is the difference between mission and vision?”.

In clear words, it shows why a company is running in the first place, and how the businesses of that company are expected to make a change in the world. In this case, you can refer to this statement as the bigger picture that the company would like to achieve.

One vision and mission difference that comes to mind is that there is no time restraint on this one. It can take a very long time to achieve this plan, but even after this achievement, the company is expected to keep maintaining their reputation and brand forever.

Mission vs Vision Comparison Table

There is more to the difference between vision and mission other than the time factor. We’ll explain more of that with the table below. This will help you get a better comprehension of how these two plans are applied in the corporate world. As part of this comparison, we’ll also take a look at the difference between vision and mission with example.

Basis of Comparison Mission Vision
Definition This is an official declaration that guides the day-to-day activity of an organization with regards to the values of the establishment This is a declaration of the fundamental reason for the existence of an establishment
Time restrain Meant to function within a limited period of time Meant to function for long as the organization exists
Scheduled time Usually refers to the present Refers to both the present and the future
Purpose To educate concerned parties on how to achieve a goal To inspire concerned parties on how to stay in line with the organization’s values
Effects Expected to directly influence a select group at a time Expected to influence the world at large, directly or indirectly
Examples ·         American express
We work hard every day to make American Express the world’s most respected service brand
·         Tesla
To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy


·         IKEA
To create a better everyday life for many people
·         Tesla
To create the most compelling car company of the 21st century by driving the world’s transition to electric vehicles

Conclusion of Main Difference Between Mission vs Vision

You don’t have to work in an organization to have definitive statements guiding your life. But before you do that, you need to know the answer to the question – “what is the difference between vision and mission?”. This will help you align with your values and stay focused on all that you do.