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In a business organization, vision is a major tool that gives motivation and the direction towards which all the members focus. Although every organization is entitled to create its own vision and make adjustments or changes to it, it is advisable for business organizations to create changes that are in accordance with the organization’s core objectives and targets. Any change or adjustment to the vision should not be driven by changing business environment but rather driven by the motive to change the business environment (Heckscher, 2005).
Considering the case study, the way vision was used at Mentor Graphics can be described as non-strategic and irrelevant. The change of vision at the company was mainly based on the changing business environment. The visions were being altered based on change of business environmental conditions. It is always advisable to let the vision lead to realization of change and not to let change process drive the change in vision. At Mentor Graphics, vision change was as technique to make the company adjust to various circumstances without necessarily considering the initial focus, goals and objectives of the company. It is this non-strategic use of vision that made the company to lose track and focus (Gratton, 2004).
The use of vision at Mentor Graphics actually strengthened the company in the short run but other problems emerged in the long run. This means that the changes in vision were not strategic enough to implement a permanent strategy that enhances long term benefits. A solution to one problem by change in vision was actually an initiative to another problem. For instance, the changes in vision led to survival of the business in the market but at the same time altered the initial objectives of the company which were to provide products that people will buy.
One of the reasons, applicable to this case, to why visions may fail is lack of strategic focus. It is very important that the vision be in accordance with the main focus of the business. Once the vision is contrasting with the goals and objectives of an organization; that vision is doomed to fail. In this case, the visions were being changed without consideration of the main focus of the business and this led to failure until the main focus of the business was considered at last. Another reason that may lead to failure of the vision is lack of specificity because lack of it may lead to differing perceptions. In this case, the lack of specificity of the vision led to different reactions from members who advocated for a continuous change of vision (Heckscher, 2005).
The vision content is very important in terms of determining the general focus of the company. In this case, the content of the vision was variable and this led to loss of the original focus of the business. The context under which the vision was altered in the company is quit controversial. The change in vision was only happening after realizing a change in an aspect that is likely to affect the business. The best context for change of vision would have been to initiate a certain focused target and not as a reaction to a certain change. The contexts under which change of visions was initiated indicated lack of proper planning and management. What emerged is that the company lost focus and its initial business plan (Burns, 2004).
Based on what happened in this case, the change in vision was emerging during change and as a strategy to drive change. This implies that the company was not strategic enough to plan and come up with a vision that can drive change. Although the visions were altered to help respond to changing business environment; the ultimate implication is lack of adherence to the company goals and objectives. Vision is actually an attribute of heroic organizations and not heroic leaders because business is a completely separate entity from the operators (Gratton, 2004).
The images of vision that can be applied in this case include the relevance of the vision to the target customers. Continuous change of vision in this case reached a point where customers could no more understand the vision. Other images of vision include the role of the management in altering the change of vision and the presumptions of success as well as the outcomes as they are perceived. The main lesson that emerges from this is that any change of vision should drive change and not be driven by change. Any change in vision should be in accordance with the general goals and objectives of the company for compliance purposes.