Challenges of strategy implementation by east African packaging industries in Kenya
According to Crittenden and Crilfenden (2000), strategic planning is the process undertaken to develop a range of steps and activities that will contribute to achieving the organizational goals and objectives. Implementing strategies successfully is vital for any organization, either public or private. Without implementation, even the most superior strategy is useless. Organizations seem to have difficulties in implementing their strategies. Researchers have revealed a number of problems in strategy implementation: e.g. weak management roles in implementation, a lack of effective communication, lack of commitment to the strategy, unawareness or misunderstanding of the strategy, unaligned organizational systems and resources, poor coordination and sharing of responsibilities, inadequate capabilities, competing activities, and uncontrollable environmental factors . This study therefore, sought to fill the gap by carrying out a research on challenges of strategy implementation in manufacturing sector. What are the challenges faced by East African Packaging Industries in strategy implementation? This was a case study since the unit of analysis was one organisation. The researcher used both primary and secondary data. Primary data was collected using self-administered interview guide while secondary data was collected by use of desk search techniques from published reports and other documents. The content analysis was used to analyse the respondents’ views about the challenges of strategy implementations at East African Packaging Industries. From the findings, it was established that that the key issues that East African Packaging Industries considered in its strategy formulation and implementation were; establishing sound mechanisms for directing activity and behaviour, using effective communication systems, and adoption of appropriate strategic and management controls. The study found out that the strategy implementation in East African Packaging Industries is moderately effective and therefore have existing gaps created by challenges faced in strategy implementation that require to be addressed to enhance the effectiveness of strategy implementation. The study found out that the factors that determined success were; strategic market segmentation, understand competitor’s strengths and weaknesses, respond to customer’s needs and wants, efficiencies through e-commerce/technology, reliable delivery, strong service, solid sales and support staff, reduces costs, operates lean, and utilize employees strategically. The study found out that the persons responsible of strategic management process in East African Packaging Industries were the top managers in the corporate level, business level, functional level, dynamic level and operational level. The study revealed that organizational culture affected the strategy implementation in the organization through; ignoring the day-to-day business imperatives, poor leadership style of managers, the dominant values and beliefs, and norms not being productivity driven, lack of understanding of strategy implementation, customers and staff not fully appreciating the role of strategy implementation towards organizational growth.