Week 4 - Mission, Vision, & Theory of Change
The inspiration for every great social enterprise is a solid mission - a
reason for being. The vision is the great big, almost certainly unattainable
goal for your organization. The theory of change is the planned process for
achieving your mission. Overall, this is the lifeblood of any organization -
it says why it exists, how it will solve the problem it recognizes, and why
it is important for this problem to be solved.
Housekeeping - Anything
that's necessary to take care of beforehand.Ê(10 min).
Introduction to Mission, Vision, and Theory of Change -
Discuss definition of terms. Ê[20 min].
Mission - Refer to our Mission
Statement guide for
Vision - A single sentence that describes how the world will look
after this problem is solved.
Theory of Change - Your theory of change is a tool that "describes a
process of planned social change, from the assumptions that guide
its design to the long-term goals it seeks to achieve.Ó 
Case Study - Choose
your favorite nonprofits, for-profits, foundations, and/or social
enterprises and analyze their vision, mission, and theory of change. It
might be hard to find organizations with a theory of change, and if
that's the case, use the classroom as a means to create possible
theories of change for these organizations. [60 min]. Use the last
week's reading to jump-start the discussion on mission statements.
Wrap Up - Spend some
time discussing what are the key criteria necessary for a vision,
mission, and theory of change. Do they need to be actionable? Should
they be time bound? Is there a size when the mission is too big? Etc.
No exercises for next week.
Next week we will introduce mission/vision and explain its importance in
social enterprises in much greater detail. We will introduce the
analysis of case studies to the class and explain their importance,
especially in the young field of social entrepreneurship.
 Ford Foundation - Page online.