Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Recently our little sketch comedy group got into a discussion about mission statements, or more specifically, our lack of a mission statement. (Something we do when we are not playing with the title block of the blog.) We’ve been going for over two years now, and we have sort of developed some habits in the way we work, and our shows are starting to develop a style that is all our own, but we have never formally written a mission statement to define what we are trying to accomplish.

We had a kind of pseudo-mission statement that we printed in some programs or press releases that was short and sweet:

Robot vs. Dinosaur is a writer-centric group whose goal is to write and perform original sketch comedy that is eclectic, dynamically staged and fun for audiences.

Pretty boring, if you ask me. For the most part, we focus on the writing first, then concentrate on being really well-rehearsed when we hit the stage. So many groups just throw shows up on a whim, or at the last minute, and they usually seem poorly written and directed and at times it appears that the actors are having more fun than the audience. That is the exact opposite of what we want to be about.

So we have all taken a whack at developing a mission statement. Below are some of our attempts. Please weigh in at the comments section regarding which one you think is best suited for Robot vs. Dinosaur or feel free to draft your own mission statement. If we adopt it as our own, I will give you two free tickets to our next show.

Mission Statement 1:

Robot vs. Dinosaur efficiently and effectively integrates a wide range of resources and core competencies to provide unique and timely solutions that exceed our customer’s stated need and expectations.

We are guided by integrity, innovation, and a desire for a safer world. RvD professionals leverage state-of-the-art training facilities, professional program management teams, and innovative manufacturing and production capabilities to deliver world class customer driven solutions.

Our leadership and dedicated family of exceptional employees adhere to an essential system of core corporate values chief among them are integrity, innovation, excellence, respect, accountability, and teamwork.

That's actually Blackwater's mission statement (I think). Joe Janes pointed out that it’s done such great things for them, he thought it would work well for us, too.

Mission Statement 2:

Company: RvD Chicago

Mission: We sincerely believe in conducting a long-term commitment to structured downsizing with expansion through functionality from the bottom up.

I believe this was Nat’s submission which he gathered from the Corporate Mission Statement Generator.

Mission Statement 3:

Company: RvD

Mission Statement: Creating imaginative and intuitive sketch comedy so as we can silly mind fuck us some bitches.

Okay, that was Geoff Crump’s improvement on the last one attempt.

Mission Statement 4:

RvD has appeared in over 100 shows in several states. RvD has written and performed three sketch comedy revues—TimeClock, Experiments with Thunder, and The Bailout Show. RvD has put on several one-night-only special event shows and parties. All of those statements are true.

With their live shows, RvD strives to provide its audience with an experience transcending a typical sketch comedy show. From the moment the audience enters the theater their senses are stimulated with music, lights, fog, and various other theatrical elements that let the audience know they have taken a break from the outside world. Sometimes the experience begins well before the house even opens. In February 2008, RvD led an army of fans in a pre-show parade; complete with costumes, a marching band bass drum and spot lights, all under the waving colors of the Think Tank flag.

RvD likes sandwiches, Danny Glover, confetti, and several other things.

Now this one was Nat’s attempt at stealing a mission statement from another sketch comedy group, Think Tank, who appeared with us at the Chicago Sketchfest last year. We are actually planning to start a sketch rivalry with them, but they don’t know it yet. More on that in another post. And possibly we owe Think Tank two tickets to our next show for using their mission statement, which is good, because then they will know what good sketch comedy looks like.

Mission Statement 5:

Writing and staging sketch comedy that shines a light on human behavior, holds a broken mirror up to nature and promotes awareness of the cruel injustices of hysterectomies. Also blowjobs.

That was my attempt at a mission statement that really reflects what we are all about, after a reprimand from Greg Wendling for not including the word “blowjobs” in any of our previous statements.

Mission Statement 6:

It is the mission of Robot vs. Dinosaur to facilitate meaningful ways for families to grieve their loss and celebrate the memories of their loved ones. We will do this by providing comedy information, comedy options, and comedy guidance with the highest level of incompetence, discourtesy and uncompassion. We will provide not respectful and not affordable funeral, cremation and memorialization sketches in a comfortable environment, always striving to exceed the expectations of each family we serve and Think Tank. We will be the market leader in the facilitation and creation of meaningful FUNeral experiences.

And that is currently our actual mission statement. Or not.

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