The influence of operational excellence strategy on the performance of Syngenta east Africa limited
As the knowledge economy expands and global interconnectedness increase, complexity in businesses grows exponentially. Consequently, organizational managers increasingly feel the pressure to proactively manage the complexity by constructing control systems that not only function in complex environments, but also adapt and evolve along with them (Edgeman et al., 1999). As a result, operational excellence has become the number one concern for many executives in order to ensure long-term profitability and consistency. The purpose of the study was to establish the influence of operational excellence strategy on the performance of Syngenta East Africa Limited. The study respondents were 8 top management employees in Syngenta East Africa Limited. An interview guide was used for data collection. Qualitative data was analysed using content analysis, through developing a thematic framework from the key issues, concepts and themes emanating from the open ended questions while the quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive statistics through SPSS v.20. Thereafter, the findings were presented in the form of tables and in prose form. The study established that Syngenta East Africa Limited had to a great extent adopted various operational excellence strategies including emphasis on employees’ development and involvement, emphasis on continuous learning and teamwork, customer focus, putting in place efficient delivery systems, having an effective and visionary leadership, investments in information technology to drive innovation, engaging in mutually beneficial and synergy creating alliances and partnerships, with a view of attaining a competitive edge in its target market, to enhance the quality of products offered and customer service and to ensure continuous improvement in its operations. The study also found out that these OE strategies had a significant influence on the performance of SEAL. The study concluded that the operational excellence (OE) strategies adopted by SEAL had a significant influence on its performance in that the OE strategies enabled alignment of people, processes, and technology that helped the organization optimize resources, opportunities, and performance; they enabled the company and its leadership to continuously improve all areas of performance, including decision-making, on-going investment, profitability, customer and partner services and human resources capabilities; they helped the firm to create leaders who have the skills and capabilities to train and develop their teams in applying continuous improvement tools and techniques in their daily jobs; they placed emphasis on stronger teamwork and cooperation among the staff and departments, excellent production and delivery systems, innovation, clarity on roles and responsibilities and alignment of organizational vision, mission and objectives with the its daily activities. The study recommended that the firm’s management should organize for seminars and workshops where its employees can be trained on the concept of operational excellence and how well to implement it to ensure that they possess the required expertise in the implementation of the concept in the firm and thereby positively contributing to its success in the organization. The study further recommended that the firm’s management should initiate a review of all the OE strategies being implemented by the firm with a view of identifying the most important limiting factors impeding the successful implementation of the OE strategies in order to ensure that the constraints are systematically eliminated so that the firm can leap optimal benefits of embracing operational excellence strategies.