Stay True to Your Mission: 5 Nonprofit Lessons from 007 (SPOILER ALERT)

Take a page from the new James Bond film and stay true to your roots.


In the James Bond reboot Skyfall, our favorite British agent is reborn after a near fatal injury. Along the road to regain his stature as the “double O” agent, Bond works ferociously to save his mother figure, uncovers the vintage Aston Martin, receives only a gun and radio transmitter from “Q”, introduces a new audience to the original musical composition, and returns to his childhood home. In the final scene we are re-introduced to the classic office that Sean Connery visited to receive his missions, the infamous hat/coat rack, a new Miss Moneypenny, and a return to the male “M”.

So what can we learn from this reboot?

Your Mission is Your Foundation
Everything has been built on your mission. The boilerplate that you attach to the bottom every press release has a purpose. Take a moment and click on your “About” page; it’s how everyone else finds out who you are and a great reminder of the direction you should be going.

Roots Equal Inspiration
Feeling stale? Take a look at your original mission and the problems that it was created to solve. If you are still seeking support then you have not yet solved these issues within your community. Gain inspiration from the urgent need to continue your work.

Message Clarity
Is your messaging sporadic and scatter-shot? Revisit your mission to provide clarity. Chances are your original mission statement was crafted using tight language. Look to its simplicity and apply it to your outgoing messages.

Are there too many cooks in the kitchen? Is your development department saying something different from your communications staff members? Even Bond goes off the radar every once in awhile. Sit everyone down and go over your mission statement. No emails. No texts. Have an actual discussion.

Get Out of the Office
This cannot be said enough and is the most important lesson to take away from this post. Get out of the office. Visit those affected by your programs. Forget reports and data for a few days and speak directly with those involved. You will be re-energized and regain that motivation you need.

Have you needed to reboot your mission recently? What worked best for your organization?


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