Challenges faced by Montessori colleges in Kenya in implementing competitive strategies
The purpose of this study was to establish the challenges faced by Montessori Colleges in Kenya in implementing competitive strategies. The study used descriptive survey design. The target population for the study were the 16 colleges that offer Montessori course only. Twelve colleges responded representing a 75% response rate. A semi-structured questionnaire consisting of closed and open-ended questions was used to collect data using the drop and pick method. The study revealed that operational costs, high competitive levels, and no marketing budget were the major challenges. In addition, strategies like low cost staff, part-time teachers hired on a needy basis, taking advantage of any attractive opportunity and use of using the students to market the college and were used heavily in the colleges. Based on the findings, it was recommended that cost leadership strategy be taken into account to maintain competitiveness. This is because cost being a major challenge requires that firms pay a great deal of attention to discretionary costs and look for ways of bringing the costs down. According to Porter (1985) pp 13, 'a cost leader, however cannot ignore the bases of differentiation. If its product is not perceived as comparable or acceptable by buyers, a cost leader will be forced to discount prices well below competitors' to gain sales.' This may result in the firm invalidating the advantages of its cost position.