Adoption of formal strategic management practices among the small and medium enterprises within Mombasa County in Kenya
This study sought to achieve two objectives which were to determine the extent of adoption offormal strategic management practices by the 5MBs in Mombasa County and to establish the challenges encountered in adopting and implementing formal strategic management practices. Target respondents were drawn from the four divisions constituting the Mombasa County namely Mvita which is located within the Island, Changamwe, Kisauni and Likoni. The respondents comprised the owners or top management staff of the organization. No differences were observed in the responses based on the geographical location of the organizations. In this report, the terms enterprises, firms, and organizations have been used interchangeably to mean small and medium enterprises. The report consists of both primary and secondary data aimed at establishing the knowledge gap and achieving the above mentioned objectives. A semi structured questionnaire consisting of closed and open ended questions was used to collect primary data while an extensive literature review was done to compile the report on secondary data. The collected primary data was analyzed through the SPSS tool for quantitative variables while qualitative responses were analyzed through content analysis. The study found out that 53% had documented their strategy process in form of written plans and objectives. However, the communication of the plans was not elaborate as 53% communicated by word of mouth indicating an informal communication system. The researcher thus concludes that the extent of adoption of formal strategic management practices among SMEs within Mombasa County is still less than 50%. Government legislation and regulations, resistance to change, resource inadequacy and organization culture ranked high in order of most challenging factors. This study faced some challenges such as lack of responses or unwillingness by some respondents to provide full information. The targeted respondents who were the owners or the top management staff were not available in some instances or were too busy to fill the questionnaire. The researcher also faced time constraints which limited the depth of the study. The study proposes further research on relationship between formal strategic management and organization performance in small and medium enterprises. More research should be done on the adoption of formal strategic management practices to ascertain consistency in the adoption process. This study could also be replicated elsewhere aiming at establishing consistency with these finding and factors that have led to the increased adoption of strategic management practices.