• sara schmude

    I’m currently defining my role as a community capacity builder / community developer – after reading this article I feel that confining myself to a title does not fully describe what I’m about. Maybe a mission statement instead of a title or even a great quote like “be the change you want to see in the world” Gandhi…Does anyone have a comment on this idea? Sara

  • S McGuire

    I have used this technique with both established and newly forming nonprofits, and it works wonderfully. Mission statements tend to be vague, pompous sounding, and jargon-filled. Having people write a haiku focuses their attention on the most critical elements of their organization’s mission and encourages them to use short, active verbs to eliminate extraneous syllables. Everyone shares their haiku and the group selects the best elements to combine into a mission statement.

  • E Duchinsky

    The constraints of the Haiku form brings people into focus. Most mission statements encase the universe.

    The tone of reverence for each word seems too much. After sitting through mission statement word-smithing sessions, arguing over where a comma belongs or the exact, EXACT perfect word makes me wonder if the meaning is lost in the exercise. More time on connecting the mission to budget, than having a precise statement.

    Missions are headlines that won’t change for 100 years. If you have the perfect one and leave it on the shelf or only know it for networking conversations, then you miss the their essence. Missions guide everyday decisions and are the reason why the organization exists.

  • Jacqueline_P

    Facilitating groups developing mission statements I have often done an exercise which results in key words and phrases being shared, followed by group word-crafting. I will try Haiku development introjected into the process, It will add another level of creativity that will probably inspire participants to be clear and concise.

  • Lisa Baranello

    Oh, I love this article. As a poet at heart who advises nonprofits, this article really hits home for me. If only we could write the other aspects of life by haiku….