Role of Vision at Mentor Graphics
For organizational change to be successful it is imperative that the vision is right. Burt Nanus, an expert in the subject, defines a vision as a realistic, credible, attractive future for [an] organization (Strategic vision, 2011). As the visions at Mentor Graphics changed, so did the future of the organization. “Revisioning” is important as the organization changes, but to many changes and/or not changing the vision fast enough created issues for Mentor Graphics. How Vision Was Used
Mentor graphics was formed in the early 1980’s and since that time has had over seven different visions. The visions had been used as a guide to decision-making and referenced what their future should be. One of the visions was “Beat Daisy.” This was what they wanted their future to be and they successfully did “Beat Daisy.” Visions as defined by Pendlebury, Grouard, and Meston has three components - the problem, the solution, and the means (Palmer, Dunford, & Akin, 2009). The problem is why the change is needed, the solution is the aim of the change, and the means is the change actions that will be taken (Palmer, Dunford, & Akin, 2009). Each of these components was incorporated in Mentor Graphics visions, yet it was lost upon the way as the company changed. Strengthen or Weaken?
The multiple visions both strengthened and weakened the company. The visions strengthened the company by being able to connect the vision to the organizations inner voice. This was true with most of the visions, with the exception of two of them. The “10X Imperative” and “Changing the Way the World Designs Together” were not understood by customers and had little to do with the actual business that Mentor Graphics was operating. This was a weakness in the organization in that it didn’t’ portray what the CEO or president wanted to convey.
It did strengthen the company in that many of its visions were based on “beating” its competitors. The visions had a good relationship of vision to market strategy. To create a competitive advantage, “vision and strategy must be unconventional, often counterintuitive, and differentiation from those of other companies (Palmer, Dunford, & Akin, 2009).” The visions during the formation of the company were based upon being better than their competitors. This way of thinking helped Mentor Graphics beat the revenues of their competitor Daisy and then they changed it to get market leadership in six different businesses.
A weakness was when they stalled to using Sun platforms, because of the existence of their vision – “Six Boxes.” This vision was developed to represent six different businesses in which they sough market leadership. Unfortunately one of the businesses, computer-aided publishing, was not paying dividends. Mentor Graphics felt it could not shut it down because it would be left with only “Five Boxes.” This delay caused them to stall on starting the new platform. It is important to adapt to new situations and environments, and overhaul them to become more relevant (Palmer, Dunford, & Akin, 2009). Not adapting to computer-aided publishing not paying its dividends and “sticking” to its vision ultimately weakened Mentor Graphics momentarily. Why Visions Fail
There are many reasons why visions fail and Mentor Graphics has dealt with many of these in their vision failures. One of the reasons was mentioned earlier when they didn’t adapt when computer-aided publishing did not pay its dividends causing that vision to be not applicable. This could be also viewed as too disconnected from the present. This didn’t allow for current obstacles so that they can be achievable and believable (Palmer, Dunford, & Akin, 2009). When computer-aided publishing caused issues, the vision made it so they couldn’t shut it down, disrupting the ability to make sound financial judgments. However, Mentor Graphics did change its vision once they “Beat Daisy” which...
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