According to organizational cybernetics, the purpose of a system is what it does.
The purpose of a system can be read from the intentions of those (governors) who design , operate, or promote it. From a cybernetic perspective complex systems are not controllable by simple notions of management and interventions in a system can best be understood by looking at how they affect observed system behavior.
All systems seek to achieve a purpose. Whether human made or natural, all systems strive to do something. When creating a new system or modifying an existing one, it is done in order that the resultant system does something “useful”.
It is also possible that the system may have more than one purpose specifically evolved system. Automobile manufacturer not only has defined purpose for the automobile manufacturing system but may own a bank to assist customer with finance or even insurance company. The bank from the viewpoint automobile manufacturing system is considered as a sub-system and the banks purpose is a sub-purpose of the main system. From a view of the bank system, the purpose encompasses the sub-process and other purpose. Therefore the achievement of system purpose is also dependent on achievement of lower level purpose and so on.
Determining effective purpose of the system is fundamental to long term viability of a system and governs related mission , vision and adaptation (change, innovation, transformation) strategies . From a governance perspective system purpose must be constantly reviewed to determine its efficacy in achieving ‘what it does’
Vision: An aspirational description of what an organization would like to achieve or accomplish in the mid-term or long-term future. It is intended to serves as a clear guide for choosing current and future courses of action.
Mission: A mission statement, a type of statement of purpose, is a statement which is used to communicate the purpose of an organization.
A mission statement is intended to clarify the ‘what’ and ‘who‘ of a company, while a vision statement adds the ‘why‘ and ‘how’.
Systemic governance not only addresses vision coherence by the system various operational entities, it also addresses its efficacy; the ideal system mission and vision considering:
- Current system state
- Environmental condition (changing environmental conditions)
- System adaptive status, its adaptive cycle with respect properties of sustainability state elements: potential, resilience and connectedness.