The Boeing mission statement is a perfect example of a company set itself a big goal that puts what they do into a larger context.
The mission statement reads:
“People working together as a global enterprise for aerospace industry leadership.”
At first glance, it’s a relatively simple statement: People collaborating to ensure Boeing is the best at what they do.
Look a little closer, however, and you’ll soon see that within these eleven words, there’s a whole lot of information about Boeing’s ethos, ethics, attitudes, and culture.
Look even closer still, and you’ll also discover just how much this mission statement influences every aspect of their operation.
That’s exactly what I plan to do today as I unpack those 11 words in the following in-depth Boeing mission statement analysis.
|Founded:||July 15th, 1916|
|Headquarters||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Market cap:||$144.61B (as of June 2021)|
Boeing Mission Statement – In-Depth Analysis
A mission statement is designed to outline the purpose and current direction that a company is taking.
The Boeing mission statement is a great example of this.
If you look at that statement again, you can see that it’s divided into three clear parts:
- 1. A purpose and goal
- 2. How they plan to achieve this goal
- 3. What sets them apart.
Interestingly enough, if I’m going to analyze the mission statement effectively, then it’s important to start at the end and work my way forward.
1. Purpose and Goal
“Aerospace industry leadership.”
By the time you’ve read their mission statement, Boeing has left you with absolutely no doubts about what they’re setting out to achieve.
They want to triumph over the likes of Airbus (in the commercial aircraft space) and Lockheed Martin (in the defense, space, and security market) and establish themselves as the undisputed, unrivaled leaders of the aerospace industry.
For the most part, they’re on their way there. According to Statista, Boeing currently:
- Generates 58.16 billion USD in worldwide revenue
- Spends 2.5 billion USD on research and development
- Boasts 157 global aircraft deliveries.
No matter how you look at it, that’s a clear sign of success, but for Boeing, it isn’t enough. Nor should it be when you consider that:
- They’re only the third-largest aerospace and defense manufacturer in the US (behind Lockheed Martin)
- They’re only the second-largest commercial aerospace company (behind Airbus)
- They only generated 58.16 billion US dollars in 2020 compared to 101 billion in 2018.
To put it another way, Boeing has got some work ahead of them.
They aren’t content to play third or even second best. They want to be number one.
It’s an aspirational goal, sure, but one that gives the company direction and isn’t all that unrealistic, especially when you consider that Boeing has a plan to get there.
This brings us nicely to the second part of their mission statement.
2. How the Plan to Achieve The Goal
Sandwiched right in the middle of the statement, it’s easy to overlook just how important these two little words, “Global Enterprise” really are.
More than just a description of the company’s size, this tells us an awful lot about exactly how Boeing plans on becoming leaders in the Aerospace industry.
They’re not going to settle for one market or location. They’re going to do everything from marketing to manufacturing on a global scale, striving for brand recognition and revenue growth not only at home in the United States but across Europe, Aisa, and elsewhere.
3. What Sets Them Apart
“People working together…”
You could argue that “people working together” says more about how Boeing will achieve their mission. You’d have a point, sure, but I’d argue that this is more about the brand setting themselves apart from the crowd and showing how they’re different from their competitors.
After all, they could choose to focus on the quality of the aerospace technology they create or their commitment to innovation, but then so could the likes of Airbus and Lockheed Martin).
Besides, to do so would be to be still thinking within the confines of their industry and focus purely on the aerospace aspect.
Instead, by focusing on people and a sense of collaboration, Boeing takes what they do and puts it into a much wider context. This isn’t just about airplanes. It’s about human beings. It’s about community, cohesion, and unity, all of which could be considered to be universal aspirations that transcend any one industry.
Boeing Vision Statement
“The Boeing Vision is an expression of our company’s purpose and values, designed to inspire and focus all employees on a shared future and to reaffirm that, together, we can meet the challenges that lie ahead.”
This is a powerful vision statement if ever there was one. It reinforces the ideals and aspirations outlined in their mission statement and once again reinforces this idea that what really matters most to Boeing are human beings, in this case, employees.
The statement talks about a “shared future” – a future shared with its employees and other stakeholders. This reinforces the idea of everyone working together to achieve a common goal.
In this instance, that common goal is “meet[ing] the challenges that lie ahead,” as the company strives to put itself at the very forefront of the aerospace industry.
Boeing Core Values
Boeing’s core values are typically summed as being:
- Diversity & inclusion
- Trust & respect
- Corporate citizenship
- Stakeholder success.
In recent years, the brand has also gone to place a much greater emphasis on environment, sustainability, community engagement, and supporting veterans.
These qualities and priorities manifest themselves in a series of principles that Boeing utilizes to outline how the company and its employees should act, operate, and achieve.
- Start with engineering excellence – Making world-class quality the foundation upon which everything else is built and focusing on safety and integrity.
- Be accountable from beginning to end – Ensuring that responsibilities are understood and managed right from suppliers to sales and marketing.
- Apply Lean principles – Delivering maximum value with minimum waste
- Eliminate traveled work – Get things right the first time round
- Reward predictability and stability – everywhere in our business – Focusing on proper planning and discipline as a means of avoiding “bumps in the road.”
- Collaborate with humility, inclusion, and transparency – Here’s that guiding principle of people working together surfacing again.
- Import best leadership practices – This guiding principle discusses how Boeing will learn from themselves and others about how to best lead their way to success.
- Earn stakeholder trust and preference – Here, the brand highlights how transparency, quality, and integrity will help them maintain customer loyalty.
- Respect one another and advance a global, diverse team – Once again highlighting Boeing’s people-first approach.
- Short and simple works – Boeing’s mission statement is only eleven words, but by choosing each of those words carefully, the company ensures that everyone speaks volumes about the brand’s aims, goals, and values.
- Putting people first – Boeing is a brand driven by its position in the market and striving to be the best, but it sets itself apart by focusing on people, collaboration, and community rather than technology.
- Everything is working in harmony – notice how there are no discrepancies between Boeing’s mission statement, vision statement, and values. All three ultimately influence and relate to each other, ensuring that they all work in cohesion to deliver a very clear message about Boeing’s priorities as a business.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Question: What is Boeing’s motto?
Answer: Boeing’s motto is “build something better” – a tagline attached to a new campaign launched by the company to display its commitment to innovation and quality.
Question: What are Boeing’s behaviors?
Answer: The famous Boeing behaviors are intrinsically linked to Boeing’s values and outline how people working for the company should demonstrate those values, such as empowering each other, encouraging collaboration, and leading with courage and passion.
Question: Is Boeing an ethical company?
Answer: Boeing has somewhat of a dubious history regarding its ethical record and has previously come under fire for several unethical decisions and practices. However, the company’s mission statement and values demonstrate that the brand is eager to turn a corner and position itself as an ethical company.
Other Businesses With Similar Values
The aerospace giants are one of Boeing’s biggest competitors, so it’s not too surprising to discover that they have similar values. As well as focusing on integrity, respect, and creativity, the company also values teamwork among their “global family” and is customer-focused, ensuring they’re another people-centric brand.
The finance brand may be in a very different space to Boeing, but they also list “working together across boundaries…to help our company win” as a key value – something isn’t a million miles away from Boeing’s “people working together as a global enterprise.”
In their values, Whole Foods states, “Our success is dependent upon the collective energy, intelligence, and contributions of all of our Team Members,” which, like Boeing, is all about people working together.
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