Does your company have a mission statement? Have you spent hours or days in a conference room, working on the words that describe your company—and only your company? Then what happened? Did those words become part of your planning and communications, or did they drift away, living only at the bottom of your press releases?
I think that the test of a mission statement is what you do with it after you put it in place. When your company makes acquisitions or develops new products and services, do those activities line up with your mission statement? Would your actions be different if you had a different mission statement? Here at Oracle, we have a vision for our software products and services—we say that our offerings are complete, open, and integrated. What’s most revealing about these three words is how they’re linked together. We offer complete solutions, but not because we expect that every piece of software you run will come from us. We partner with thousands of companies—more than 20,000 globally. We do this because that’s what we mean by complete—a complete solution that provides you with all the functionality you need, with the capacity to bring those pieces together in a unified system.
We say open because that’s been a part of our philosophy since the company’s founding 32 years ago. As you’ll see when you read “Open for Business,” Oracle’s commitment to open standards is at the core of our strategy and vision. It’s what makes open possible, allowing you to choose the standards-based software that best meets your needs.
Lastly, integrated speaks to our belief that you can’t run your business with siloed applications. You need software that gives you real business intelligence about every aspect of your business—not different sets of applications providing different types of information about similar processes, making it necessary to reconcile that information with time-consuming, manual effort.
To conclude my editor’s note, I want to introduce the new editor in chief of Profit, who will take over full-time starting with the February 2010 issue. Currently the editor of Profit Online, Aaron Lazenby has worked for Oracle for nine years and is intimately familiar with the products and services that Oracle offers. As well, he’s engaged with the broader technology community and will bring a fresh perspective to the content you’ll see in these pages. I’ll miss working on Profit—I’ll miss the comments from our readers, which I have enjoyed and found so enlightening over the years—but I know I leave it in good hands.
Margaret Terry Lindquist is editor in chief of Profit magazine.