While some companies like to keep their mission statement short and to the point, the FedEx mission statement is unquestionably a mouthful.
On their website, the Tennessee-based logistics specialists outline their mission as follows:
“FedEx Corporation will produce superior financial returns for its shareowners by providing high value-added logistics, transportation, and related business services through focused operating companies.
Customer requirements will be met in the highest quality manner appropriate to each market segment served. FedEx will strive to develop mutually rewarding relationships with its team members, partners, and suppliers.”
While it’s no doubt, one of the lengthier mission statements we’ve seen (especially compared to the very brief ones we’ve seen from the likes of Chipotle ), covering so much ground proves effective in ensuring that they really have thought of everything and that a lot of work has gone into retaining their position as industry leaders.
Still, there’s an awful lot to unpack there, just let’s take a look at some of the finer details of the FedEx mission statement, what they mean, and we can learn from them.
|Founded:||May 5, 1971|
|Market cap:||$73.86B (as of August 2021)|
FedEx Mission Statement – In-Depth Analysis
The whole host of things immediately jumps out after reading FedEx’s lengthy mission statement for the first time. The first, and perhaps most important to note, is the kind of language they use.
While brands like Adidas maintains a similar success-focused approach, their mission statement uses emotive language and perhaps even uplifting.
Not so with FedEx, their 55-word statement is clearly very formal and serious in tone. Sure, this may not be very fun, but that’s precisely the point.
As a company responsible for ensuring around 3 billion packages reach their destinations safely, and on time every single year, FedEx isn’t about playing around and having fun.
They certainly take what they do, very seriously and the tone of their mission statement, certainly making it abundantly clear that when it comes to doing this company means business.
In that sense, FedEx’s statement is every bit as on-brand, Adidas’ aspirational statement is for them.
Still, the use of formal language is only one thing at play here, and with FedEx, the most interesting aspects lie much more in what they say than how they say it.
The Shareholder-Focused Approach
“FedEx Corporation will produce superior financial returns for its shareowners.”
Straight out of the gate, FedEx leaves you in no doubt as to what their top priority is:
Providing much value for their shareholders.
We’ve said many times before the best mission statements should include three key details:
- what the company does
- Who they do it for
- how they do it
Within the first ten words of their statement, FedEx ticks two of those boxes, ensuring that there is certainly no guessing involved when it comes to determining immediately what the courier specialists see as their most critical goal.
It’s interesting to note that when it comes to ticking the “ who they do it for” box, the courier specialists don’t immediately focus on their customers in the way that countless other brands do, but this in itself isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
After all, while customers may read the company’s mission statement to see if their values are aligned enough to want to work with them, such statements are far more likely to be of interest to those all-important shareowners.
As such, putting them right at the beginning of their mission simply makes sense. It speaks directly to both existing and potential shareowners by saying, “continue to invest in FedEx, and you can be sure that making you as much money as possible will be our top priority.
“by providing high value-added logistics, transportation and related business services through focused operating companies.”
FedEx goes onto tick that third box, outlining precisely how they’re going to deliver those superior financial returns to their shareowners.
Again, the company is entirely serious and grounded in the realities of modern business here. There’s no lofty, aspirational goal that may sound impressive but is vague, hard to quantify, and leaves readers guessing about the nature of their operation.
Instead, the simple yet effective statement emphasizes activities the company’s core business, with the words “ high value-added” giving a clear message that they strive to do more than just deliver packages but do so in a way that enriches the lives and businesses of their customers.
“Customer requirements will be met in the highest quality manner appropriate to each market segment served.”
Even though FedEx may be primarily concerned with serving their shareowners, they of course couldn’t do that without their customers, so it’s no surprise that this is the focus of the third part of their statement.
On the one hand, this could be seen as another tick in the box for “who they do it for,” but look a little closer, and you’ll see that really, this is all about how FedEx achieves their primary mission.
Again, the brand has sent a direct message that shareowners are their priority. Noting that they will strive to meet their customer requirements in the highest quality simply ensure that their customers will keep coming back, meaning more revenue for FedEx and, thus, more money for shareholders.
“FedEx will strive to develop mutually rewarding relationships with its team members, partners, and suppliers”
The sentence on customers is quickly followed by the final line regarding those who work with and for the company.
Looked at one way, it could be said that is the true essence of FedEx’s “how.”
Yes, their goal is to provide value-added logistics, transportation, and related services, but all of this is impossible without customers, team members, partners, and suppliers, ultimately meaning that while profits are a priority, FedEx is essentially a people- focussed enterprise, and it’s this focus that allows them to achieve their mission.
FedEx Vision Statement
FedEx state that their vision is to be:
“a dynamic and progressive courier services firm that leverages technology and impact the lives of all people”
As with their mission statement, there’s a lot to unpack here:
Dynamic and Progressive
Both dynamic and progressive are powerful words that make an impact.
Dynamic, in particular, is very much on-brand for FedEx, conjuring forth images of speed and efficiency. In other words, exactly the kind of qualities you’d look for when choosing a courier firm.
Progressive is equally as important. Both the business world and the lives of individual customers are constantly changing. By striving to remain progressive, FedEx is sending a message that they are striving to grow and adapt to these constant changes, all in the name of achieving their overall mission.
Enhancing this idea of ’being “progressive,” FedEx is clear that they’ll use technology to their full advantage, continuing to move with the times and exploring ways that technology can help them better meet customers’ needs.
Impact the Lives of All People
FedEx is committed to their People-Service-Profit philosophy, the school of thought that if they treat their employees well, employees will treat customers well, which will lead to long-term satisfaction and thus financial success.
In this regard, the lives of all people really does mean all people – team members, individual customers, and yes, those all-important shareowners.
FedEx’s values are:
Again, despite their mission focussing on shareholders, FedEx very much set themselves apart by being a people-first company, a value which is reflected in their mission and vision statements, as well as the way they strive towards achieving that mission and vision every day .
As a global courier firm, service lies at the very heart of the company’s operation, it simply makes sense that this would be one of their highest values.
Innovation is the popular buzzword that everyone from logistics industry leaders like FedEx to fast food specialists Wendy’s hold as one of their values. In the case of FedEx, this links back to their vision of being a progressive company, ensuring they’re always looking for new and effective ways to meet customers’ requirements.
FedEx workers are trusted with billions of dollars worth of goods every year, and many of those billions of parcels they deliver are priceless to their customers, which is why integrity is one of their key values. When their team members act with integrity, customers can be sure that they’ll receive a service based on trust and honesty.
Loyalty is a key principle for FedEx. If the company is loyal to their employees, those employees are loyal to return and get the job done for customers. This in turn leads to increased customer loyalty and thus financial success.
As we said at the very beginning, there’s a lot to unpack when it comes to FedEx’s mission statement, but if there are any three things you should really take away from this in-depth analysis, let it be these:
- Language and tone matter – FedEx’s mission statement may not be playful or aspirational, but their serious tone matter how serious they are about what they are about.
- Putting people first makes a difference – Emphasizing the people-first approach is reflected in the company’s mission statement, vision statement, and values. Since FedEx are leaders in their industry, it’s clearly an approach that has paid off for them.
- It’s important to know your audience – FedEx seems to understand that investors are far more likely to be interested in their mission statement, which is why they make generating superior returns for their top priority shareowners.
Other Businesses with Similar Values
While the way FedEx writes their mission statement may be somewhat unique, they’re not the only brand that place a high value on people, service, integrity, and loyalty.
- UPS – The arguably FedEx’s biggest competitor, it comes as no shock to find that UPS shares many of the same values, namely integrity, being people-led, and delivering exceptional service.
- Boeing – As we mentioned in our Boeing mission statement analysis , the aerospace specialists focus on people working together to achieve success, something well reflected in FedEx’s mission.
- American Express – People, service, and integrity are all essential to how American Express operates, proving that these are worthwhile regardless of your industry.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: What is the FedEx Purple Promise?
Answer: FedEx’s Purple Promise states, “I will make every FedEx experience outstanding.”
It is a pledge taken by all who work for FedEx, ensuring that they deliver high-quality for their customers and details of the brand’s social responsibilities.
Question: What is the FedEx Motto?
Answer: ‘The World on Time’ has been FedEx’s official motto since 1994.
Question: What is FedEx’s Philosophy?
Answer: FedEx believes in a People-Service-Profit philosophy. By focusing on making the company a great place to work, customers will receive better quality service, and thus revenues will increase.
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