Leadership challenge resolution
Vodafone is a multinational company which operates mostly in Africa though its main origin is Britain. This company is a telecommunications company that deals mostly with telecommunications services provision including call and SMS services and internet provision services (www.eaag.org/index.php/component/content/article/113-).
This company is organized in form of teams where each team is charged with a specific task in the daily running of the business. With this company having other companies in it, it faces some problems in its organization. Most of these problems are in the operation strategies of the company which appears to be based in globalization. This challenge is mainly on one of its constituent companies, Safaricom, which is located in Kenya (www.eaag.org/index.php/component/content/article/113-).
Safaricom was started in Kenya back in the year 2003 with an aim of improving the general welfare of the Kenyan citizens. Being a telecommunications company offering mobile phone services and internet data communication, it has great impact on the Kenyan citizens’ lives. The mission statement of this company is to partner with local communities to address the social economic and environmental issues to foster long lasting and positive change. Closely related to this mission statement is the vision statement which states: a prosperous Kenya, where peoples’ lives are positively transformed. This has led to development of some core values of this company which may be outlined as: education, appreciation of the Kenyan cultural diversity environmental conservation and economic empowerment (www.eaag.org/index.php/component/content/article/113-).
Being one of the main service providers in Kenya, this company has more than four outlet offices which are all headed by a regional manager. These regional offices offer most of customer services but due to the high dynamicity associated with this field of technology, globalization is posing a threat to this company (www.eaag.org/index.php/component/content/article/113-).
Globalization aims at ensuring that there are no barriers in communication. This would mean that call transfer protocol across different service network providers to be the same as call transfer rates within the same network (www.eaag.org/index.php/component/content/article/113-).
This problem has posed a threat to this company since in Kenya there are other four major service providers namely Airtel, Essar Yu, Telkom wireless and Orange communication companies. These companies appear to embrace this part of globalization since they have all flat call transfer rates across all networks. This has made many of the former Safaricom subscribers to migrate to other service providers. The rates of mobile money transfer have also been revised and globalization also proposes the same idea of a flat transfer rate across the networks. This part is also very tricky since these companies offer this service and the transfer rates though not totally flat across the networks; the competitors have a lower rate compared to Safaricom (Jim, 2009).
Moving on to the other problem posed by globalization to this company, data transmission and connection costs have become a matter of who is more popular. All these companies have internet data services thus the completion is still on. Globalization calls for market liberalization. In a liberalized market, little or no government control is imposed thus the free forces of market fully determine the price of data. This has led to a drastic drop in data price as more internet service providers come into the industry making this company to result in reducing the cost of internet data bundles. The reduced rates of have led to reduction of anticipated profits resulting in lower sales returns.
The other issue that comes with globalization is reduced restriction in entry of players into a certain industry. This is what has made it very easy for companies to join the telecommunications industry thus a flood has occurred in this industry. Looking at a brief history of this industry in Kenya, mobile telecommunications industry began with Safaricom where the company enjoyed monopolistic advantages. In a span of about five years, there has been an addition of four more players in the industry. This has reduced the advantages that Safaricom enjoyed initially thus the company can claim this has brought a disadvantage to it (Marlene, 2001).
Lastly, with the much improved technology and fiber optic, there has been great revolution in the internet services. This has made Safaricom lose a share of its initial share in internet service provision to other players in this field. The earlier infrastructure has been rendered useless with the use of modems reduced to almost zero. This has made the company lose its revenue generated by sale and use of modems (Marlene, 2000).
With this challenge in mind, several leadership skills have to involve in finding a long lasting solution. This solution must go through all the five stages of problem solution. In a much simpler structure, let us look into this challenge and resolve it professionally (Jim, 2009).
The first step in problem resolution is problem analysis. This would involve looking at the problem from all angles to understand it. In business, it might be called problem research. In our case, the main issue is the disadvantages associated with globalization in this company. This problem is still very broad thus redefining the problem to find the specific problems should be done. From market research analysis, the greatest impacts are on call transfer and internet data. This has led to definition of the actual problem thus as a leader, one can move to the next step (Marlene, 2000).
The second step is to generate ideas so as to solve this problem. This step is very critical since a number of possible solutions must be generated so as to fully cover the problem and find a solution. This step may involve writing down the possible solutions (Jim, 2009). In this case, the possible solutions may include: shun the whole idea of globalization , take active role in changing and adapting to the new technologies so as to keep in pace with the changes in the industry or even to use other competitive advantages to counter the effects of globalization. From a personal perspective taking the role of the leader, I would settle for two hypotheses of adapting to the new technology and use of other competitive advantages in the industry (Stewart, 2008).
The third step is to evaluate the hypotheses. This testing step comes with a lot of challenges since the hypotheses have to go through a series of evaluation tests to test its viability, practicability and effectiveness in addressing the problem. In some books this step is taken as giving back to the problem. It is believed that a person having a problem is still the best person to produce an answer. This means that the hypotheses are given back to the firm since the firm dynamics will produce the best solution. Other steps of evaluating a solution may include careful interpretation, study so as to understand the short term and long term effects of the solution and the effect of the solution to the whole firm in general. Looking at our case, the company may result in testing the hypotheses directly. This may be taken as putting on the music and sitting on the balcony (Jim, 2009). From the balcony, the leader will determine the effectiveness of the solution and determine the viability (leader implements a solution plan and then take some time off the high leadership seat to closely monitor the progress of the solution (Marlene, 2000)).
The fourth step is closely intertwined with the third step and involves making the best choice. The best choice is not only the most effective in dealing with the problem but also the one with the maximum lifespan of benefits. This step comes into play after the third step has produced more than one appropriate solutions which have almost equal weights in meeting the problem demands. This step is quite tricky since it involves a lot of postulation and study so as to fully understand the phenomenon at hand. In this case, the adoption of new technology would come with a cost of continued loss of revenue on modems and subscribers. However, the company will in the long run have the ability to set up a modern telecommunications architecture which would be much updated. At the very end, the company may retain its market in internet service provision. In the case of call transfer, the company may accept the flat rate transfer but use technology to make its other service of mobile money very efficient. This will make the subscribers remain loyal to the company (Marlene, 2000). Turning to the other hypothesis, using other competitive advantages may appear the best solution for the moment. Postulating into the future, the company’s competitive advantages may be learnt of by the competitors thus come up with strategies to eliminate them. Therefore, this solution may serve short term advantage but prove ineffective in long term analysis (Ruth, 2001). In a personal capacity, I would first implement the second hypothesis as I slowly move to the first hypothesis. This will offer me a smooth transition which will see me and my company through the challenge (Stewart, 2008).
The last step is to plan the implementation procedure. This step is the one I have shallowly stated as implementing the second hypothesis followed by the first. However, this step requires elaborate structuring for the smooth transition to occur (Ruth, 2001). With these steps fully implemented and in the correct order, the company will definitely conquer the challenge (Stewart, 2008).
In conclusion, the knowledge gathered throughout this course has a very practical approach on the outer world. The topics themselves have enough to offer the learners thus I can confidently say the materials are a success.
Stewart, M. 2008. Five steps of problem solving. Retrieved from http://leadonpurposeblog.com
Ruth B. 2001. Psychology review: Hypothesis Evaluation from Bayesian perspective. Perceptronics Inc.
Jim H. 2009. Adaptive leadership: accelerating enterprise agility. Thought works printing press.
Marlene C. 2000. Briefcase books series: Leadership skills for managers. McGraw Publishers