The value of innovative thinking

The value of innovative thinking

BY LIZZ WAMBUA

Innovative thinking is an ongoing process that involves use of internal and external data to find and develop unique opportunities and ensure creativity and innovation for superior performance. Today’s business environment is so dynamic and highly competitive since competition has gone global. Therefore, corporate strategies must go beyond the borders of nations and markets. Unique business insights and opportunities must be developed and applied to create the firm’s competitive advantage. A journal article “Strategic Thinking: 11 Critical Skills Needed” by J. Glenn Ebersole states that the greatest and most successful organisations in the world, over many years and decades, would think ahead and encourage great strategic thinking at least somewhere in their business plans. The following are some of the factors that highlight the value of innovation and strategic thinking.

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Clever ways to know YOUR COMPETITOR 

Clever ways to know YOUR COMPETITOR 

Gather information from companies’ websites, customers, surveys, conferences and social media to understand more about products and other environmental aspects for strategic purposes. 

By LIZZ WAMBUA

Competitive intelligence (CI) is the act of gathering and analysing information in order to gain knowledge on competitors, customers, products and other environmental aspects for strategic purposes.

Information is gathered from companies’ websites, customers, surveys, conferences and social media. Benjamin Gilad, a professor of business strategy and author, in his writing “Competitive Intelligence Shouldn’t Just Be about Your Competitors” says CI is a perspective on changing market conditions. This means identifying risks and opportunities early enough to allow the company adapt its strategy or in extreme cases, change it.

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Riding on Lean Six Sigma for efficiency

Riding on Lean Six Sigma for efficiency

By JAMES RATEMO

Cutting cost of operation and enhancing customer satisfaction are key aspects every company strives to realise in order to remain competitive and profitable. Riding on the Lean Six Sigma (LSS) methodology, the National Bank of Kenya is transforming its processes to better satisfy clients and enhance employees’ experience.

Mr Thomas Gachie, Director, Operations Division at National Bank says the financial institution adopted the globally acclaimed business principle to “provide distinctive client service.” He notes that the bank has never regretted the 2014 decision to go for Lean Six Sigma training offered locally by the Kenya Institute of Management (KIM) in collaboration with Institute of Lean Six Sigma Professionals. “We have attained a faster turnaround time in most of our services. Our account opening now takes three days from one month,” says Gachie.

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