Author Archives: James Maposa
The regulatory environment is changing based on a society that is more health conscious, advocating for the preservation of life. Increasing of taxes on products such as tobacco, alcohol and now sugar-sweetened beverages are a result of increased lobbying from non-profit organisations who are pushing governments to penalize consumers to protect themselves from themselves by making it relatively unaffordable to purchase these products. By increasing taxes it is assumed that the consumers will use less of the good based on a higher pricing point. The fewer units that are consumed, the less strain on your body and ultimately the longer you live. Raised taxes also benefits the tax man because, from a human nature standpoint, it takes a lot of willpower to kick a habit, let alone reduce your utility threshold. We live in an increasingly stressful world and the products we are told to consume less and less of, sometimes provide the temporary relief we need to get by. A rather controversial but true state of affairs based on our daily trials and tribulations.
For a while now we’ve been hearing how important it is to be customer-centred particularly for large corporates. Cliché terms such as “customer is king” and “customer experience is the new brand image” come to mind and other concepts such as how “it costs six times the effort to acquire a new customer when compared to keeping an existing one”. From these statements it is clear that the customer has become a very important component of the equation when it comes to running a successful business.
On numerous occasions I’ve been asked what makes a strong brand. An immediate response is the company’s founders. Without a visionary founding, an organisation is soulless. The essence of the organisation is thus built around the vision and mission of its founders when the organisation is established. It is also important for me to mention that the vision, mission and values must continue to be tested as time moves along. A business’ surrounding environment changes; now even more so than in the past. These changes challenge the organisation to adopt and adapt and at times evolve their mission to align with what the market wants. Before this happens a critical evaluation needs to be carried out by the firm’s stakeholders as to whether a change in strategic direction is warranted. This often takes place where the gap between what an organisation stands for and what the market wants is so wide that without change, the organisation risks gradually losing its client base. Remaining relevant is, thus, one of the factors that an organisation’s leadership must continue to focus on as they grow and progress their brand.