The definition of mantra is A sacred verbal formula repeated in prayer, meditation, or incantation, such as an invocation of a god, a magic spell, or a syllable or portion of scripture containing mystical potentialities.†
Following are five examples that illustrate the power of a good mantra: Authentic athletic performance (Nike).‡ Fun family entertainment (Disney).? Rewarding everyday moments (Starbucks).|| Think (IBM). Winning is everything (Vince Lombardi’s Green Bay Packers). Compare the Starbucks mantra, “Rewarding everyday moments,” to the company’s mission statement, “Establish Starbucks as the premier purveyor of the finest coffee in the world while maintaining our uncompromising principles while we grow.” Which is more memorable? Imagine that someone asks your parents or your organization’s...
A final thought on mantras: Don’t confuse mantras and tag lines. A mantra is for your employees; it’s a guideline for what they do in their jobs. A tag line is for your customers; it’s a guideline for how to use your product or service. For example, Nike’s mantra is “Authentic athletic performance.” Its tag line is “Just do it.”
The hardest thing about getting started is getting started. (This is as true for a writer as it is for an entrepreneur.) Remember: No one ever achieved success by planning for gold. You should always be selling—not strategizing about selling. Don’t test, test, test—that’s a game for big companies. Don’t worry about being embarrassed. Don’t wait to develop the perfect product or service. Good enough is good enough. There will be plenty of time for refinement later. It’s not how great you start—it’s how great you end up.