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This paper describes the effectiveness of leadership and change in promoting operations of Jumia Inc., a market place which allows customers to get any product they want through by placing orders online. Online marketing has been the recent marketing tool most organization use. With the increased digitalization across the world, internet speeds have been increased allowing access to online information easily. Other methods of online communication that have been integrated into advertising include the use of Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, that allow people to connect online. Companies that use online marketing for their products and services in the 21st century have greatly enhanced their productivity. However, online marketing strategy for products and services require sober organization’s leadership that will help stir up the objectives of the organization to achievable levels. Such leaders have a mandate to incorporate various changes that make the organization strategic or tactical in driving the goals of the organization.
The key change that occurred in this organization was enhancing the online interaction with customers. The company needs to gain a strong competitive position, which can enable it control a large market segment. By making it easy for customer to place their orders, view different products and get immediate feedback, it will be easy to enhance their satisfaction. In this report, the role of leadership and management in supporting the needed changes has been defined. Specifically, leaders have to be supportive and motivate all the people to work toward meeting the goals for the new changes.
Good leadership is crucial managing the affairs of any organization. Organizations often meet diverse issues that need critical decisions of the management. Some of these issues require the organization to rapidly adapt to a specific change of course of action and strategies pertaining organization’s operations. The management team has to be encompassed by a team of qualified individuals that are capable of forming and creating a good working environment between the organization’s senior staff and the junior at all aspects of its operations. The ability of the organization to act decisively on emerging change issues that might affect its operation in one way or another is depended on its leadership (Gleeson, 2017 p. 42). The management has to offer satisfactory leadership that can direct the activities of the organizations under all circumstances that might influence the firm in a particular way.
The paper will base itself on the online marketing and selling strategy employed by Jumia company. One of the largest companies in Africa with reach to a number of African countries. The company uses the internet to sell its products and services in the countries. Among the countries where Jumia has managed to integrate this strategy include the countries such as Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, among others. The explanation of this strategic move can be done through analyzing the leadership theories that has helped manage the organization.
Before considering the in-depth analysis of the online marketing strategy as a change taken by the organization, it is imperative to highlight the various issues concerned with leadership and management through change. Measuring the ability of the organization's leadership is determined by not only the success the organization attains but also through the decisions it makes under critical circumstances. Proper leadership is capable of transforming a diminishing organization into a den full of opportunities and success. Such a transformation is possible through enhancing proper management of any resource and opportunity in the firm through utility conversion.
However, creating utilities in an organization is an imperative aspect of the leadership and management of the available resources. Before considering sourcing for external materials, the firm’s leaders should consider using the what is available at their disposal to ‘magnify’ their needs. Utilizing the organization’s needs is sometimes not very easy if the management team is not diverse enough to deal with the current issues that are affecting or might influence the performance of the organization (Ann 2005, p.16). These can be achieved through considering a change of strategies and other aspects related to change in organization’s structure, team, marketing strategies, among others and have a positive influence on the productivity of the organization.
Organizational change is a common issue any firm can encounter. Changing in the strategical capabilities might be influenced through the myriad inputs the leadership incorporates. Although changing an aspect in an organization might be influenced by numerous issues, it is important everyone to appreciate and take a positive look at changes that might come in the business. Appreciating change can take different perspectives with some change ‘hurting’ the operations of the business (Styles & Seymour, 2006).
In all these cases, the organization’s leadership is tasked with ensuring normal working business operations are achieved while undergoing changes. The management is tasked with ensuring everything comes to normal through motivating different departments that might have feel affected by a specific change. A good example changes in the certain management of a department through transfer or firing of an official. Such a change might seem to cause issues that might lead to slow, laxity, resistance among others that might affect business operations.
Changes in an organization may also be affected by other shifts like the change in roles played by different participants of the organization. Through change of the roles, the firm is likely to create a change in the way activities take place as opposed to the previous way things used to happen. Even though both negative or positive change is expected due to the shift in roles, the ultimate reality is that the organization’s leadership is mandated to control these changes. In doing this, the leadership should offer good management that will ensure that changes realize positive results even if the conditions are not as much favorable compared to before shifting the roles, duties, and responsibilities in organizational changes. In the paper, a critique is made towards change in marketing strategy that caused a change in the roles played by the various officials of the organizations (Smith, 2011 p. 18).
Jumia has been performing excellently over the years. It was marked one of the best by offering the satisfactory services to its customers. The company performance enhanced through a strategic application of the best services that contribute to better yields in an organization. The organization has been able to employ a number of employees in different departments that have helped stir-up the operations of the organization. One of the best performing departments has been the public relation and communication department that has effectively enabled the organization to gain a positive public image hence increasing the sales of its products and services to many companies as claimed by Lagrosen (2005).
Recently Jumia decided to change the way is products and services will be sold. The organization has relied on traditional methods of product and service promotion for a long time to promote the sale of its products and services. These methods include the use of television, newspaper, radio, among others that have been on hit for decades. These methods are still effective in promoting the goods and services of Jumia just like any their organization. However, through the application of the advertising methods listed above, the organization imperatively noted a need of becoming an inclusive company through including other methods of promoting and accessing the products and services.
In recognition of the ever digitalizing world, the company has noted an increasing use of the internet to market, sell and contact customers. The company through this has rolled out the traditional method of promoting products and services and managed to input the online method of buying, and promoting products and services (Tiago 2014, p. 6). Changing the marketing strategy of the company into online marketing of goods and services has not automatically rolled out the traditional means completely but converted into the use of the internet as the primary method.
Through a quest of maintaining Jumia’s competitiveness, there has been a need to include this change in the organization. The change is essential in keeping the organization’s workflow effective through streamlining the services of the organization. The leadership and management of the organization saw it vital to have this change included in the organization with an immediate effect. The action was taken after a keen and critical analysis of the underlying influence online marketing has on promoting the products and services. Besides, traditional method offering an opportunity to engage clients in a myriad of marketing avenues, online marketing was investigated to be the best. The firm’s management determined that online marketing contains other tenets that are not in the traditional methods hence likely to enhance the efficiency of an organization.
Due to the change in the marketing and selling strategy for the company’s products and services, the organization had numerous changes that had created a need for this imperative decision. Even though the decision might not serve positive to everyone, it has been evident that the decision’s objective was good for the firm. The firm has been able to make a transition through the changed strategy of marketing their products and services and in return gaining a reputable name besides attracting more customers buying the customers products (Angeli, 2017).
The increased digitalization created a forum where products and services can reach any individual across the globe. As a result of the internet creating a global village, it has offered avenues where individuals can communicate without necessarily having to travel. The benefits of this fact are well-known. Creating a universal meeting point where sellers and buyers meet for the sake of exchange of products and services with money was essential in the 21st century (Gleeson, 2017). In addition, the company had to accept the fact that change is inevitable and the use of internet in marketing and selling of products and services was at its peak. The companies using these techniques were even seen to be more successful and progressing in the promotion of its products and services. Take a look at some global companies selling products and services such as Alibaba, Apple Inc., Amazon, Google, among others. Why can’t Jumia follow their path as a company?
The company saw it imperative to have its products and services centralized through an online form known as a website or page. As opposed to the traditional means where Radio and TV were commonly used, online marketing helps customers make constant consultation with the seller and the company. It takes a shorter time to fulfill the demands of the customers through attending to their queries through online means unlike if traditional methods were put in place. If all these communication advantages arise from the use of the internet in marketing and selling of company’s products and services, why can’t Jumia use them?
As opposed to traditional methods such as TV, radio, and newspaper, online marketing strategies allow regular updating of customers. Customers can be easily updated on the type of products and services available in stock, the price changes at the regular interval, the ratings placed by the previous users of the products and services, among others. Online marketing, therefore, prevents customer’s disappointments that result from simple misunderstanding and failure to communicate through updating of the company’s products and services. Based on this issue, the company saw it fundamental to transit into this strategy of selling their products and services. Why should Jumia disappoint its clients?
The change towards the establishment of different working programs and schedules that will help satisfy the company’s clients’ needs. Working on a 24/7 basis was one of the things the company was eying. The work schedule of 24/7 schedule was not only a need and an aspiration to the company, but to be effective where the company can maximize its workforce. Why pay employees for less organization’s productivity? The use of online marketing will help the workforce engage the clients throughout helping in disseminating important information required to enhance organization’s productivity.
Although the organization was using traditional means of advertisements to promote its products and services, the organization was still involved with online marketing as a secondary method of promoting their products. As a complementary means of promoting products and services of the organization, it could still raise a substantial revenue almost or sometimes higher than that of the traditional means of product promotion. In this regard, management evaluated this fact and resorted to making the method primary through establishing it through pumping adequate resources (Angeli, 2017). The management and leadership of the organization came to this agreement after considering that the organization would save a lot from the expenses incurred through advertising of the organization’s products and services. Why should the organization not save on product promotion?
Anyone understands that product promotion such as advertisements serves various functions. Some of these functions include informing the public, persuading the public, appealing, among others. Besides traditional methods serving most of these functions, it is evident that it could not perform them as effective as the online marketing strategy. The methods could inform the public but fail to gather enough evidence to offer the appealing, persuading, or any other function at the same time. Through analysis of this issue by the organization’s management and leadership team, it is clear that the firm has to resort to another method of promotion that can promote all these functions at the same time. Could the results boost the organization’s effectiveness? Why should the company not promote business effectiveness?
Additionally, the organization’s leadership found out that the traditional methods of product promotion were only capable of taking one side functions. In this regard, traditional methods of product promotion could only inform, persuade, convince or any combination of these without the actual engagement of the product or service ownership to the client. With online marketing, it is possible to advertise the products and services of the organization as well as selling them to the customers. The leadership of the organization saw this method imperative in increasing the organization’s productivity. Selling the products and service while advertising for them was one of the effective methods online marketing could do to the company. The orders could be placed immediately the customer see the product or service he/she is interested in buying. The analysis of this issue gave an insight on how the organization is capable of multitasking to increase its sales. Why should the organization limit itself to selling its products and services while advertising?
Before considering this change, the organization was lucky to find out that the largest percentage of its employees has enough experience, knowledge, and skills that could help integrate the new marketing strategy into use. For instance, 89% of Jumia employees were computer literate with different levels of computer competencies. According to the statistics, the organization had employees having skills, knowledge, and experience from computer packages level to advance programming level that could be utilized in the organization in different phases while putting in place online marketing (Angeli, 2017). Through critical; evaluation and analysis of this fact, there was a need to make use of the employees to run the company through a shift in marketing and selling strategy. Through the motivation of numerous employees, they decided to design and host the company’s website that has been marked to be among the best comparing to the existing online selling platforms. How else can the company maximize the skills, knowledge, and experience of its employees?
Apart from the main issues raised as a cause to change the marketing and selling strategy to the company. There are other issues that contributed to the change. Some of them were analyzed to be derived from the change of this strategy. The need to take the organization on a global map made it motivated to stir up the change program in marketing and selling of its products. The company is also clear that it does not deny its traditional methods of selling and marketing its products and services as they will be used in addition to the changed channel.
The change has served an imperative turning point for the organization. The changed strategy has converted the business into a hub where customers come to confirm, refer, among others various aspects of the organization’s products and service. The strategy has made the organization reliable in terms of ordering and fulfilling of its products since customers are able to make live orders. As opposed to the previous method where customers know the price of commodities while at the shop, customers can now check the website even before making the preparation of buying the product and services. The internet has made the organization reliable in the manner that customers have been placing orders that are in stock and at the price, they are willing to buy the product and service (Viglia, 2014 p.4).
Online booking and order have been made available to customers. Can you imagine buying a product or service in the middle of the night? How could this happen if you are to physically visit the company’s store for the product? Online buying has is one of the introduced changed that customer has highly welcomed it. Through the site, customers can open an online account easily through a sign-up button and can order goods and services. At a small cost, the company can organize to deliver the product to the customer’s doorstep or at a certain pickup station where the customer can easily access it as decided by the client.
The new change has made the organization inclusive. The change in marketing strategy has left everyone feeling part of the organization since they can access the product and service at their selected time. Given that the digitalization process in the various parts of the world has shifted people’s interests especially the youth into the frequent use of the internet, the internet users have felt that the company has considered their plea. They have actively contributed to the company through buying of their tokens, leaving customer’s review and referring their colleagues on behalf of the organization. The inclusiveness of the marketing strategy can also be analyzed in terms of the multitasking the strategy is capable of doing. For instance, besides advertising for the company’s products and services through the internet, the internet is capable of selling, communicating on a one-on-one basis, supporting, recruiting, among others unlike in traditional method such as a radio that serves only a specific function such as advertising through informing. Through the management’s decision to move to online marketing, the organization received a higher credit in terms of increasing its sales. Which organization would aim at low sales in a competitive market?
The new change has made the organization a 24/7 shopping Centre. People are able to shop at whatever time of the day they are willing to. Even over the weekends and public holiday where you could find other shopping malls closed, the organization’s website would be functional and customers can still buy or contact us. What does this imply to the company? The company becomes reliable. One can imagine how busy business people or working class individuals find this organization reliable to them. The 24/7 working formula has contributed into realization of high returns by the organization. Communication flow between customers and the company has been strengthened more through the use of media channels such as email, Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, among others with an instant reply that may include even a video or voice call. How does it feel when one communicates with the support on a one-on-one basis?
The change in strategy has created a chance to of working even at home without necessarily affecting the organization’s productivity negatively. Since interception of the online marketing strategy in the firm, it has been able for the organization’s management team to work through controlling, investigating, and analyzing the organization’s data while at home. The aspect of working while in the office alone has been reduced hence giving the management a 24/7 control over the organization’s operations (Viglia 2014, p. 7). Can you imagine being able to access the operation of the organization while on a vacation? The absence of management at all times at the office might have contributed to the development of the organization further through internal organizations, and consultations between junior staff. Staff members can also avoid other forms of leadership such as autocratic that may lead to little input of important efforts into the firm. Work at home program for even the other staffs such as customer care service has motivated them and helped them save a lot. For instance, the regular commuting charges to and fro the organization has been a great relief to them.
In addition, the work at home program has helped the organization create big save. The company has reduced the many stores where customers used to come and shop in due to the online shopping and doorstep delivery. The huge rental fees they were undergoing on monthly or on lease terms has been a great deal to the organization. Big thanks to the leadership and management of the firm for introducing this amazing program.
In all these cases, the strategy change is making the company go global. Since internet allows people to connect as if they live in the same village, people from different parts of the world have been able to access the products and services despite being thousands of miles away. The company has recorded cases where customer living abroad have been able to buy goods and services as gifts for their parents, relatives, and friends that are within the reach of the organization despite their localities. They have been able to do this through the online payment methods the company offers such as the use of credit cards, PayPal, mobile payments, among others.
The change has contributed to the organization’s leadership and management into thinking of appropriate ways of enhancing product and service delivery to their customers. One of them includes price update that prepares the clients psychologically before deciding to buy a specific product or service of interest. As one checks through the website, he/she can see the commodity attached to a price tag, colorful picture of the commodity, brief and detailed description of the commodity, and the customer's review and feedback about the product and service. What is the role of all these to a customer? Customers are then fully informed before deciding to buy the product or service. One can also raise queries for clarification by the support based on what is presented.
The online strategy has made active use of email marketing to promote its products and services. The organization is frequently updating its customers on the new deals and offers through the use of emails besides the use of cell phones. Through their daily or weekly newsletters where customers can subscribe at will, the company sends new deals at offers at that regular interval. Customers have been able to plan for their future sales based this trend. The newsletters have also offered a diverse mind to choose before actually landing on an item they might land into regrets.
The company leadership through the management has introduced the agency consultancy to help effectively translate online marketing into the company. Through this program, agents are recruited to serve as the link between the locals who might not have access to the internet of the website on behalf of the company. The agencies also advise the company regarding how best they can boost their sales by forwarding the myriad cases customers have at the local level. Through online and offline platforms, the agencies work to advise on the needs to buy through the organization. Agents earn commissions through the sale they make on behalf of customers and this has helped the organization magnify their sales.
Online marketing interception into the company has been considered to be a great benefit to customers. The company has a way of redeeming the customer cash into pints and vouchers for returned goods that meet the criteria set in the return policy. The vouchers motivate customers to keep shopping with the company in the near future to utilize the cash. As a strategy set by the organization’s leadership, the vouchers offer an opportunity for customers to earn trust with the company. In some instances, the organization generates vouchers to any individual willing to shop with the company. The vouchers are generated online for online selling purposes.
Nevertheless, the strategical change has been associated with improvement in customer care services besides the after sale services. The organization is assisted in operation through a steady and experienced customer care desk. The help desk is extended to help online users to access the services of the organizations (Linlin 2014, p. 4). On serving new users, the organization has video tutorials and pdf files that helps customers to do various operations on the website such as signing up for an online account, placing an order, among others. A 24/7 customer care call center is also ready to help stranded customers (Danaher & Rossiter, 2011).
The leadership and management skills, knowledge and abilities expressed in this organization through this change program is a clear indication that the organization is progressing. By following the historical shift in marketing and operation of the organization, we can clearly derive numerous issues concerning leadership and management of any organization. As a leader, it is imperative to critically analyze the issues and translate them into the organization for efficiency and productivity purposes.
Change is inevitable and any organization should be ready to change when it comes at its disposal. Change might affect the way the organization run but at the end, the productivity should be the same or higher than what it used to achieve before the change. As a leader of any organization, one should welcome any changes in an organization with a positive attitude (Schlosser, Shavitt, & Kanfer, 2011). The organization’s leadership should positively take into account the positive effects of change and make use of them to capitalize on making profits. As a leader of a firm, one should motivate other individuals working for the organization at all departments to develop a positive attitude towards the organizational change. They should base their talks on the positive impacts of the change as opposed to negativity since this is the only tool toward a forward-moving organization.
The change in this organization imparts a knowledgeable individual. In this case, leaders can learn the other perspective of working without negatively affecting the organization’s productivity. In this case, it is evident that enhancing the organization’s productivity does not only involve being present at the office but can take place whether an individual is in the office or not. A leader or manager of an organization should base himself or herself on productivity and not how it takes place as long as customers are not unconvinced. For instance, working online for the company at home might yield similar results to that when in office; staff decide but motivate him/her to work in the office.
Organization’s leadership cannot be autocratic always for all organization, sometimes democratic leadership style can yield fruits in an organization. Leaders and managers can consider engaging their staffs, agents, and other sellers on the best methods of countering organizational changes. In this process, the leadership of the organization should allow its member to engage in discussions that might improve the service delivery in an organization. Their contributions should be accounted or through making decisions and suggestion.
Additionally, research, creativity, and innovation is the basis of organization’s growth and development when a change arises in a company. The organization’s leadership and management should learn to invest in innovative and creative research methods that will enhance the service delivery and productivity in an organization. Through this, we can easily appreciate the change and capitalize on it for organization’s benefit (Gurau, 2008). A good example is a company that had to come up with a new method of delivering customer’s products and services through introducing means such as online payment methods like PayPal, credit cards, among others.
The organization through the help of its leaders need to set up working policies and regulations. These policies will be meant to guard both parties while engaging in business operations. For instance, the company has managed online marketing and selling of its product through the help of satisfactory policies such as the return policies for the products and services that allows one to return before seven days after delivery of the product. When leaders and the management come up with such policies, it becomes easy to solve the myriad cases that arise due to the operation of business activities.
Recognizing clients as key stakeholders in the business operations is vital to the success of the organization. As an important part of the organization, they deserve the best products and service. The leadership and management should ensure that customers’ products and services need to be tested to meet the set conditions. Similarly, customer’s response should be taken with seriousness, which can be done through follow up surveys immediately after delivery of the product or service sold through online platforms (Chu 2013, p. 6). The survey should be based on the rating for customer help, the product or service itself, the driver delivering the product, agent among others for improvement purpose. Leaders should use the survey to help improve the sectors that might receive negative reputations.
In conclusion, the organization’ change has been able to achieve great positive impact through increasing the efficiency in the organization. The achievement has been possible through adequate utilization of available resources and development of a positive attitude that has creatively and innovatively helped translate the change into a reality.
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