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Develop Plan


   Mission & Vision Canvas

Develop clear statements about your organization’s future aspirations and present activities.

Session Length: 60+ minutes Group Size: 6-8+ people


Use this tool when a team or organization is first forming, any time there is (or needs to be) a significant shift in focus or effort, or when the organization’s efforts and purpose need clarification.


This tool helps establish clarity and consensus about the team’s present activities, desired future, and the link between the two. A good set of Mission and Vision statements can help ensure the team’s activities are well aligned with their objectives, and this canvas creates an opportunity for all participants to have a voice in developing these statements.


Assemble a small team and provide each member with a copy of the Mission and Vision Canvases, as well as the third page of instructions and examples.

STEP 1Spend a few moments discussing the objective of this session and the difference between a Mission Statement and a Vision Statement. A VISION statement should describe future conditions in aspirational terms. A MISSION statement should describe present activities in concrete terms.

TIP: Begin with a VISION statement if you are starting from scratch. Begin with a MISSION statement if the organization has already started or has a general vision established.

STEP 2: Invite the group to spend 4-6 minutes quietly writing responses to the questions in the boxes from the canvas labeled A – D (Vision) or A – E (Mission). Don’t miss the Bonus box in the Mission canvas.

STEP 3The facilitator then leads the group through a discussion of the questions in the boxes, capturing key ideas, insights, and phrases for each. Use clarifying questions and prompts such as “Say more words about that…” or “Can you be more specific?” The “Five Why’s” is a good technique as well.

STEP 4Highlight or circle key words from the lettered boxes, then use them to draft a Mission or Vision statement in the box on the right of the canvas. Refer to the fill-in-the-blank example below that box as a guide, but feel free to use other formulas or formats.

STEP 5: Assess the draft statement using the quality check guidelines and the Test provided on the lower right section of the canvas.

EXAMPLE: Feeding America

       Vision: A Hunger Free America (aspirational and future-oriented)

       Mission: To feed America’s hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks and engage our country in the fight to end hunger (concrete and present-oriented)

Mission Vision Canvas |Worksheet

Download this tool to print out and start using with your team. Each download includes a tool description and if applicable, a template and example.