Comparative Analysis of Mission Statements of Chinese and American Fortune 500 Companies: A Study from the Perspective of Linguistics

Quan Lin, Yingchang Huang, Ruojin Zhu, Yue Zhang
2019 Sustainability  
A mission statement is an important instrument for strategic management for an enterprise. How to establish a mission statement and how to leverage its roles in conveying the vision of and leading the long-term and sustainable growth of the enterprise are critical in strategic planning for enterprises. The current study adopted a corpus analysis method and built a corpus of mission statements by selecting the mission statements of 100 companies each from Chinese and American companies in the
more » ... 7 Fortune 500 companies. Through the analysis of high-frequency words obtained from the corpus based on the appraisal system approach from Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL), we attempted to identify the characteristics discerning the mission statements of Chinese and American companies. Our results showed that (1) the distribution patterns of evaluation resource words of Chinese and American companies are similar; (2) Chinese companies highlight innovation, society and development of the enterprise, while American companies emphasize customers and product or service; (3) both Chinese and American enterprises highly concern survival, philosophy and public image; (4) American companies pay more attention to stakeholders, especially primary social stakeholders, while Chinese companies' attention is inclined to secondary social stakeholders. It is concluded that the mission statements of Chinese companies are society oriented and emphasize the social roles of an organization, showing a corporate pertinence to a lesser extent, while American companies' mission statements pay more attention to customers and partner relationships, which can be seen as the American companies' market and individual orientation.
doi:10.3390/su11184905 fatcat:44c6pmqs6jdlpoqopo5gmztmwm