The Importance of Mission Statements in Healthcare
February 22, 2021
Every compelling company worth investing in issues a mission statement that defines the company’s culture, product, values, and core competencies. They can be lengthy, or a simple catch phrase that succinctly defines the core of the business. Put simply, I believe that the mission statement of a company is the “elevator pitch” for the overall business.
As I generally tend to invest in healthcare companies in the therapeutics and diagnostics space, the mission statement is the first area I focus on in order to understand the company culture and to ascertain the level of patient-centricity ingrained into it. In healthcare, it is critical to understand the business mindset of the management team. A company must be patient-oriented to be successful. There have been very few healthcare companies that have excelled in their business without putting patients and the consumer first.
I think there are three essential components to each mission statement that make it effective.
Key market: Who is the company targeting?
Contribution/Product: What is the company trying to do, whether its a specific product or service?
Product Leadership: What makes this company’s particular product unique? Why should the market buy or use its service over another?
Intellia Therapeutics’ (NASDAQ: NTLA) mission statement is a perfect example of a company that has achieved describing all three components with great clarity: “Transforming lives of people with severe diseases by developing curative genome-editing treatments.”
In a single sentence, it is clear to any investor that this is a therapeutics company hoping to develop curative treatment using editing technology as its core development platform. While not necessary, Intellia also goes on to explain that delivering therapeutics using lipid nanoparticles is an important focus area. This is a unique delivery modality with a beneficial safety profile. The company further describes its core values in respecting individuals as the first pillar, exploring and pushing the boundaries of science, disruptive current paradigms, and delivering results with boldness.
It can be tricky writing mission statements and it is possible to hurt the company’s image with a poorly worded one; however, as a complex company, Intellia strikes a great balance of clarity in describing its long-term vision and internal company culture. In science, a successful development pipeline requires a bold and “patient-first” internal culture. This starts with the management team and their vision.