Change Implementation and Competitive Positioning

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Journal of International Business Research and Marketing
Volume 2, Issue 1, November 2016, Pages 14-23


Change Implementation and Competitive Positioning

DOI: 10.18775/jibrm.1849-8558.2015.21.3002
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.18775/jibrm.1849-8558.2015.21.3002

¹Bako Yusuf Adebola, ²Taiwo Akeem Ayinde, ³Ademeso James Olufemi

¹ ² ³Federal Polytechnic, Business Administration and Management, Ilaro, Ogun State Nigeria

Abstract: Implementing complex organizational changes involve collective action by many people, each of whom contributes something. Implementation of change may face a big problem if the required environment, technique, and technologies are lacking. Descriptive survey research design was adopted. The population of this study comprised 43,820 management employees of the telecommunication industry (NCC 2012). Based on proportional stratified sampling technique, the survey sample size calculator software was used to select 2312 employees. A six-point likert scale type questionnaire used to collect data was validated by experts and a 0.81 Cronbach alpha coefficient confirmed its reliability. Of the 2312 questionnaire copies administered, 1435 were returned duly filled out. Change implementation had a significant relationship with competitive positioning (R2=0.251, p-value=0.0000 < 0.05); hence, the result showed a positive significant relationship. The study concluded that change implementation significantly determined competitive positioning. The study recommended among other things that managers should make change implementation an integral part of change management so as to ensure competitive positioning. A major implication of the findings for the industry is that it has provided an insight into some of the implications change implementation have on competitive positioning in the Nigerian telecommunication industry. Implementing change judiciously is necessary.

Keywords: Change implementation, Competitive positioning, Change management, Competitive positioning

Change Implementation and Competitive Positioning

1. Introduction

A lot of resources may be committed to change effort, but when the change implementation stage is erroneous, the intended firms’ objectives may not be achieved. Implementing complex organizational changes involves collective action by many people, each of whom contributes something to the implementation effort. Because implementation is often a ‘team sport,’ problems arise when some feel committed to implementation, but others do not. Herscovitch and Meyer (2002) observe that organizational members can commit to implementing an organizational change because they want to (they value the change) because they have to (they have little choice), or because they ought to (they feel obliged). Commitment based on ‘want to’ motives reflects the highest level of commitment to implement organizational change. Change implementation may be bedeviled by a lack of support for the modification. Implementation of change may face a big problem if the required environment, techniques, and technologies are missing. An effort to implement change is institution-wide focused at the departmental level; the reason for failure can nearly always be traced to a lack of effective change management skills exhibited by the leader. More specifically, it is most often a leader’s misunderstanding of organizational culture and human relations within that culture that may prevent successful implementation of change strategies. Implementing change in the Nigeria Telecommunication industry might have been affected by the unstable economic and social factors of the Nigerian business environment.

Employee resistance to change is a complex issue facing management in the complex and ever-evolving Nigeria Telecommunication industry of today. The process of change is ubiquitous, and employee resistance has been identified as a critically important contributor to the failure of many well-intended and well-conceived efforts to initiate change within the organization. In many cases, vast amounts of resources are expended by organizations to adjust employees to a new way of achieving desired goals. The natural propensity for individuals to “defend the status quo” presents a set of challenges that management must overcome to bring about desired change. The objective of this study is to illustrate the significance of change implementation on competitive positioning.

Hypothesis
H0: There is no significant relationship between change implementation and competitive positioning.

The role change implementation has not been clearly defined and the discrepancies in the steps needed to be taken when implementing change need to be made known clearly.

Scope of the Study
The scope of this study covered the management level employees of the Nigerian telecommunication industry with a population of 30724 employees. The sample representatives for this study are 2312 employees. The proportional stratified sampling technique was adopted for this study. This study is done in Lagos state Nigeria where the head offices of the telecommunication companies were situated.

2. Literature review

2.1 Change Implementation

Whatever has been planned now needs to be implemented, and focus should be shifted from planning to action. Attention also needs to be given to monitoring and control to ensure that things happen as intended. There are two basic approaches to implementing change. Sometimes change involves moving from A to B, where, before implementation, the nature of B is known and clearly defined. This kind of change is sometimes referred to as ‘blueprint’ change. Typical examples of a blueprint change include relocation, computerization of a business process, or the introduction of a new appraisal or grading system. In these circumstances, it is easier to view the management of change from the perspective of ‘planned change’ that involves a predetermined linear process (Nelson 2003).

Often, however, it is not possible to specify the end point (B) of a change in advance of implementation. While a need for change might be recognized, for example, if the organization is losing market share or is failing to innovate as fast as its competitors, it may be less obvious what needs to be done to improve matters. There may be a broadly defined goal and a direction for change, for example improving competitiveness, but it may not be possible to provide a detailed specification of what this end state will look like. In some situations, it may not even be helpful to think in terms of specific end states because the rate of change in the operating environment may be such that the precise definition of a desirable end state may be subject to constant revision. In these circumstances, a blueprint approach to change is inappropriate. Change need to be viewed as a more open-ended and interactive process that emerges or evolves over time. Buchanan (2011) argues that this is not unusual and that change often unfolds in an iterative fashion and can involve much backtracking. Collins (2001) echoes this view and argues that the change process is often more like a series of loops rather than a straight line, reflecting the reality that things rarely progress as planned, and even when plans are implemented as intended, there are often unanticipated consequences. Managers frequently report that for every step forward, they seem to fall back two steps and they constantly have to ‘fix things’ to keep the change on track.

A new or evolutionary approach to change involves taking tentative incremental steps in, what is hoped, the right direction. After each step, the step itself and the direction of the change are reviewed to establish if the action worked and if the direction still holds good. As the process unfolds, it may be possible to define the end state a bit more precisely or to take future steps with more confidence.

Even with blueprint changes, these feedback loops are important because feedback from implementation can lead to the identification of new problems and possibilities. It may have implications for the planning of further activities to bring about change and may even affect the definition of a more desirable end state, thus leading to a revision of the blueprint.

Sometimes the feedback may also alert change managers to the possibility that was initially perceived as a blueprint change might be more appropriately approached and managed as an evolutionary change. But this feedback is not always available.

2.2 Competitive Positioning

Competitive position refers to the position a firm occupies in a market or is trying to occupy in the competition. Competitive positioning is a summary of the way a company wants its target audience to perceive its products, its brands and its corporate reputation. Understanding how competitive rivals are positioned in the marketplace help refine own business strategy so that competitive threats can be counted and strengthen the own position. To build an understanding of competitor’s positioning, the analysis of their communications, monitoring analysts’ view of the marketplace and the research on customers’ attitudes towards competitors were conducted. Competitive positioning is about defining how you will ‘differentiate’ your offering and create value for your market. It is about carving out a spot in the competitive landscape and focusing your company on delivering on that strategy. Some of these strategies involve getting the market profile (i.e. size, competitors, stage of growth), customers segment (i.e. groups of prospects with similar wants and needs), analysis of the competition (i.e. strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in the landscape), positioning strategy (i.e. how you will position your offering to focus on opportunities in the market) and value positioning (i.e. the type of value you will deliver to the market).

When your market clearly sees how your offering is different than that of your competitors, it’s easier to generate new prospects and guide them to buy. Without differentiation, it takes more time and money to show prospects why they should choose you. As a result, you often end up competing on price – a tough position to sustain over the long term.

One of the key elements of your positioning strategy is your value proposition. There are three essential types of value, operational excellence, product leadership and customers’ intimacy.

2.3 Lewin’s Three – Step Change Theory and Model

Kurt Lewin (1945) introduced the three – step change model. This social scientist views behavior as a dynamic balance of forces working in opposing directions. Driving forces facilitate change because they push employees in the desired direction. Restraining forces hinder change because they push employees in the opposite direction. Therefore, these forces must be analyzed, and Lewin’s three – step model can help shift the balance in the direction of the planned change.

According to Lewin, the first step in the process of changing behavior is to unfreeze the existing situation or status quo. The status quo is considered the equilibrium state. Unfreezing is necessary to overcome the strains of individual resistance and group conformity. Unfreezing can be achieved by the use of three methods. First, increase the driving forces that direct behavior away from the existing situation or status quo. Second, decrease the restraining forces that negatively affect the movement from the existing equilibrium. Third, find a combination of the two methods listed above. Some activities that can assist in the unfreezing step include: motivate participants by preparing them for change, build trust and recognition for the need to change, and actively participate in recognizing problems and brainstorming solutions within a group (Robbins2003).

Lewin’s second step in the process of changing behavior is movement. In this step, it is necessary to move the target system to a new level of equilibrium. Three actions that can assist in the movement step include: persuading employees to agree that the status quo is not beneficial to them and encouraging them to view the problem from a fresh perspective, work together on a quest for new, relevant information, and connect the views of the group to well-respected, powerful leaders that also support the change. The third step of Lewin’s three-step change model is refreezing. This step needs to take place after the change has been implemented for it to be sustained or “stick” over time. It is most likely that the change will be short-lived and the employees will revert to their old equilibrium (behaviors) if this step is not taken. It is the actual integration of the new values into the community values and traditions. The purpose of refreezing is to stabilize the new equilibrium resulting from the change to balancing both the driving and restraining forces. One action that can be used to implement Lewin’s third step is to reinforce new patterns and institutionalize them through formal and informal mechanisms including policies and procedures (Robbins 2005).

In Lewin’s Model, there is a stipulation for three distinct steps in change management if it is to be effective. Those are unfreezing the present, moving from the present and if freezing of this model is not followed, then change will be short-lived. In other words, you can cause needed change to occur. However, for change to be permanent, you must dismantle the present (and the capability to move back to the present), move from the present to the future and put in place the people and processes to ensure permanency (Lewin 1951).

This model is still relevant in terms of what to do. However, the speed at which it must be done has increased dramatically. Lewin’s model is one for planned change, not responses to unplanned change. Yet it is applicable when an unanticipated change occurs.

Two of the most urgent challenges to radical change management are setting appropriate aspiration and mobilizing energy and ideas. However, change path must be outlined and defined. Planning a change effort is involved in various facets of an organization and its people need to be considering communication initially, and throughout the change process is imperative. It is through the deliberate and disciplined action of management that organizations effectively implement change initiatives that cultivate success (Lloyd 2009). Similarly, Suresh (2001) submits that the strategic goals of the firm must lead the change effort. The change effort must always take into account the firm’s competitive strategy. A change implementation process was posited to be a process that includes, generate urgency; create a vision; develop political support; manage the transition; sustain momentum.

Some techniques focus on change in the task others on the plans for attaining these goals. The commonly used structural approaches to change are goal setting, job redesign, quality circles and strategic planning. All of these techniques of OD attempt to produce some change in individual employees’ work group and/or the entire organization (Lunenburg 2012). In line with the findings of Hans-Jurgen (2002) that is, organizational change management methods and tools during implementation can play an important role to facilitate change in process as well as in the corporate culture. The role implementation plays has not been clearly defined, and the discrepancies in the steps needed to be taken when implementing change need to be made known.

The study adopted cross-sectional survey research design. The reason for the choice of this design was necessary because none of the variables was manipulated and no experiment was performed as done in the study of (Lunenburg 2012).

3. Research Methodology

3.1 Population

The population of this study consisted of all employees at the management level in the Nigerian telecommunication industry. The population is 30,724 management staff as shown in Table 1.1 below

Table 1: Population and sample size table

Firm Population Sample size
MTN Nigeria 11430 1860
Airtel Nigeria 15820 1190
Globacom Nigeria 2003 151
Etisalat Nigeria 1100 83
Visafone 300 23
Stacomms 71 05
Total 30724 2312


Source:
Nigeria Communication Commission 2012

3.2 Sample Size and Sampling Techniques

To determine the sample size of 2312 management employees in Table 1 above, to be extracted from the total number of management level staff, the sample size calculator from the survey software developed by creative research system was used (www.surveysystem.com), which has room for confidence level: 95% to 99%. However, 98% was used as an accepted standard for social and management sciences. Also, the confidence interval is 1.96 according to the level of confidence used from the normal statistic table.

However, after using this software, a sample size of 2,312 was generated by the software. Also to be able to determine the number of samples of the communication company, each of the communication company served as strata making six strata. The proportional allocation was used to determine the number of samples selected from each company since the strata size differs.

At this point, the researchers selected the numbers of respondents from the total size from each of the telecommunication companies. Random number generator was used from Smith’s Statistical Package (SSP)

3.3 Sampling Method

The proportionate stratified random sampling method was used for this study. Jankowicz (2003) described this method as dividing the population into sub-groups on the factor in question, and keeps the list separate in your frame; you then choose sub-samples at random with each separate list. However, the sum of each of the sub-samples amounts to the sample size. The stratified random sampling method is a type of probabilistic sampling method.
2,312 copies of the questionnaire were administered to the respondents with the help of 3 research assistants at the head offices of the selected telecommunication firms. After two weeks of administration, 1,402 questionnaires were returned out of which 1,345 were subjected to analysis.

The respondents were also evaluated on their readiness for change implementation in their various units. The researcher uses twenty-four questions for this, based on six likert scales. However, it was observed in (Table 2) that majority of the respondents picked “fairly agreed” to implementing change with an average for each of the question ranging from 4.11 to 4.61. It shows that since the managers were not ready for change, they found it difficult in implementing change.

Table 2: Change implementation

 QUESTIONS  MEAN  MODE  STD. DEV.  VAR  SUM  N
 The project lead for the change is known, and project champions aid the planning and implementation  4.43  4  1.191 1.418  6358  143
 There are long periods of planning before the change is delivered  4.38  5  1.008  1.016  6281  1435
 The implementation of the change within your role is managed solely by the organization  4.26  4  1.040  1.082  6109  1435
 There are logical reasons for change which are visible, and the goals are transparent  4.22  4  1.048  1.098 6053  1435
 Good ideas for change are hidden and used for personal agendas  4.13  4  1.116 1.246 5922  1435
 Change is expected without being linked to incentives  4.20  4  1.041 1.084 6008  1429
 Communication about change is limited to only those directly concerned with the project  4.32  4  1.149 1.321  6202 1434
 There are delays in the timescales that are set in the change project  4.11  4  .979 .958 5899 1435
 The process of implementation of the change is flexible and reactive  4.19  5  873 .762  6010  1435
 Once the implementation has taken place user involvement in the project begins  4.44  4  .940 .884 6173 1435
 There are predetermined guidelines for how the system implementation is to be managed and these are followed  4.61  5  1.178 1.388  6621  1435
 Implementation leadership is unclear, and champions are not utilized effectively  4.21  4  1.102 1.214 6047  1435
 The reasons for change are unclear, and there are different views of the goals of the implementation  4.24  5  1.173 1.375  6078 1435
 Ideas are openly communicated and encouraged within the implementation  4.30  5  970 .940 6137 1426
 Resistance influences the direction of the implementation  4.16  4  972 .946  5948 1429
 Incentives are linked with the implementation to aid the process of change  4.20  4  1.045  1.092 6025 1435
 Implementation communications are open and readily available  4.31  4  1.029 1.059 6171 1432
 Key implementation personnel are chosen, put in charge and left unchanged  4.24  4  1.073 1.150 6074 1434
 Wide timescales for the implementation deliverables are set, and goals and are met  4.25  4  917 .842 6086 1432
 The project is being implemented by people with the necessary core skills in a clearly defined and tracked manner  4.48  5  1.009  1.019  6427  1434
 There is feeling that everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives  4.42  5  1.087 1.181 6346 1435
 Employees can take ownership and influence details of the change  4.41  5  1.057  1.117 6324 1435
 There is appreciation of how the change will be held and effectively communicated  4.48  4  951 .905 6431 1435
 There is assistance from the project owners, project infrastructure, training specialist to create a supportive environment  4.35  5  1.035  1.071 6249 1435

 

The respondents were also evaluated on their readiness for change implementation in their various units. The researcher uses twenty-four questions for this, based on six likert scales. However, it was observed in (Table 2) that majority of the respondents picked ‘fairly agreed” to implementing change with an average for each of the question ranging from 4.11 to 4.61. It shows that since the managers were not ready for change; they found it difficult in implementing change.

4. Research Results

4.1 Descriptive Statistics of Change Implementation

335 respondents (23.3%) strongly agreed that the project for change is known and project champions aid the planning and implementation. 371(25.9%) respondent agreed, while 384 (26.8%) respondents fairly agreed. However, 272 respondents (19.0%) fairly disagreed, 68 respondents (4.7%) aids respondents (0.3%) strongly disagreed. 167 respondents (11.6%); 527 respondents (36.7%) and 486 (33.9%) strongly agreed, agreed and fairly agreed respectively that there is a long period of planning before the change is delivered. However, 198 respondents (13.8%) fairly disagreed, 49 respondents (3.4%) disagreed while eight respondents (0.6%) strongly disagreed. 171 respondents (11.9%) strongly agreed that implementation of the change within your role is managed solely by the organization. Similarly, 374 respondents (26.1%) agreed, while 631 respondents (44.0%) fairly agreed. However, 204(14.2%) reasonably disagreed; 22(1.5%) respondents disagreed and 33 respondents 2.3% strongly disagreed.

It was observed that 140 respondents (9.8%) strongly agreed that there are logical reasons for change which are visible and the goals are transparent. 417 respondents (29.1%) agreed while 601 respondents (41.9%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 204 respondents (14.2%) fairly disagreed, 39 respondents (2.7%) disagreed and 34 respondents (2.4%) strongly agreed.

185 respondents (12.9%) suggest that good idea for change are hidden and used for personal agenda, 305 respondents (21.3%) agreed while 556 respondents (38.7%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 317 respondents (22.1%) fairly disagreed, 40 respondents (2.8%) disagreed and 32 respondents (2.2%) strongly disagreed.

That change is expected without being linked to incentives is strongly agreed to by 118 respondents (8.2%), 440 respondents (30.7%) agreed while 618 respondents (43.1%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 147 respondents (10.2%) fairly disagreed, 81 respondents (5.6%) disagreed while 25 respondents (1.7%) strongly disagreed.

Some of the respondents (259) representing 18.0% strongly agreed that communication about change is limited to only those directly concerned with the project. 357 respondents (24.9%) agreed while 502 respondents (35.0%) fairly agreed. However, 251 respondents (2.6%) disagreed and 28 respondents (2.0%) strongly disagreed.

136 respondents (9.5%) strongly agreed that there are delays in the time scales that are set in the change project. While 302 respondents (21.0%) agreed and 645 respondents (44.9%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 291 respondents (20.3%) fairly disagreed, 59 respondents (4.1%) Disagree and 02 respondents (0.1%) strongly disagreed.

Very few respondents (33) representing (2.3%) strongly agreed that the process of implementation for the change is flexible and reactive. Similarly, 559 respondents (39.0%) and 529 respondents (36.9%) Agree and fairly agree respectively. However, 281 respondents (19.6%) fairly disagreed, 25 respondents (1.76%) disagreed and eight respondents (0.6%) strongly disagreed.

149 respondents (10.4%) suggest that implementation leadership is unclear and champions are not utilized effectively. 453 respondents (31.6%) agreed, and 505 respondents (35.2%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 253 respondents (17.6%) fairly disagreed, 34 respondents (2.4%) disagreed and 41 respondents (2.9%) strongly disagreed.

158 respondents (11.0%) strongly agreed, 526 respondents (36.7%) agreed while 405 respondents (28.2%) fairly agreed that the reasons for the change are unclear and there are different views of the goals of the implementation.

It was observed that 189 respondent (13.2%) strongly agreed that once the implementation has taken place user involvement in the project begins. Similarly, 478 respondents (33.3%) agreed while 578 respondents (40.3%) fairly agreed. However, 163 respondents fairly disagreed, 19 respondents (1.3%) disagreed and eight respondents (0.6%) strongly disagreed. 24.7% of the respondent amounting to 354 respondents strongly agreed that there are predetermined guidelines for how the system implementation is to be managed and they are followed. Similarly, 538respondentd (37.5%) agreed while 252 respondents (17.6%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 249respondents (17.4%) fairly disagreed, 10 respondents (0.7%) disagreed and 32 respondents (2.2%) strongly disagreed.

It was observed that 95 respondents (6.6%) strongly agreed that Ideas are openly communicated and encouraged within the implementation. 562 respondents (39.2%) agreed while 533 respondents fairly agreed (37.1%). However, 175 respondents (12.2%) fairly disagreed, 39 respondents (2.7%) disagreed and 22 respondents (1.5%) strongly disagreed.

118 respondents (8.2%) strongly agreed, 353 respondents (24.6%) agreed, and 694 respondents (48.4%) fairly agreed that the direction of the implementation is influenced by resistance while in contrast 181 respondents (12.6%) fairly disagreed, 73 respondents disagree and 10 respondents (0.7%) strongly disagreed.

It is observed that 169 respondents (11.8%) strongly agreed that incentives are linked to the implementation to aid the process of change, 281 respondents (19.6%) agreed, 781 respondents (54.4%) fairly agreed. However, 110 respondents fairly disagreed, 58 respondents disagreed while 36 respondents (2.5%) strongly disagreed, 194 respondents (13.5%) strongly agreed, 374 respondents (26.1%) agreed, and 617 respondent (43.0%) fairly agreed to the statement implementation communications are open and readily available. However, 195 respondents (13.6%) fairly disagreed, 32 respondents (2.2%) disagreed while 20 respondents (1.4%) strongly disagreed.

Some of the respondents (186) representing (13%) strongly agreed that key implementation personnel is chosen put in charge and left unchanged. 377 (26.3%) agreed while 532 respondents fairly agreed. In contrast, 293 respondents (20.4%) fairly disagreed, 20 respondents (1.4%) disagreed as 26 respondents (1.8%) strongly disagreed.

57 respondents (4.0%) strongly agreed, 540 respondents (37.6%) agreed while 628 respondents (43.8%) fairly agreed to the statement time scale for the implementation deliverables are set, and goals and are met. However, 144 respondents (10.0%) fairly disagreed, 37 respondents (2.6%) and 26 respondents (1.8%) strongly disagreed. 21 respondents (14.7%) strongly agreed that the project is being implemented by people with the necessary core skills in clearly defined and tracked manner. 524 respondents (36.5%) agreed while 506 respondents (35.3%) fairly agreed. However, 154 respondents (10.7%) fairly disagreed, 16 respondents (1.1%) disagreed and 23 respondents (1.6%) strongly disagreed.

212 respondents (14.8%) strongly agreed that there is a feeling that everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives. Similarly, 518 respondents (36.1%) agreed while 458 (31.9%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 193 respondents (13.4%) fairly disagreed, 19 respondents (1.3%) disagreed and 35 respondents (2.4%) strongly disagreed. 172 respondents (12.0%) strongly agreed, 558 respondents (38.9%) agreed while 495 respondents (34.5%) fairly agreed that employees could take ownership and influence details of the change. However, 132 respondents (9.2%), 48 respondents (3.3%) and 30 respondents respectively fairly disagreed, disagreed and strongly disagreed. It was observed that 235 respondents (16.4%) strongly agreed, 425 respondents (29.6%) agreed while 598 respondents (41.7%) fairly agreed that there is an appreciation of how the change will take place and be effectively communicated. In contrast, 154 respondents (10.7%) fairly disagreed, 19 respondents (1.3%) disagreed and 4 respondents (0.3%) strongly disagreed. 168 respondents (11.7%) strongly agreed that there is assistance from project owners and training specialist to create a supportive environment. Similarly, 518 respondents agreed while 478 respondents (33.3%) fairly agreed. However, 214 respondents (14.9%) Fairly Agree, 40 respondents (7.8%) disagreed and 17 respondents (1.2%) strongly disagreed.

Table 3: Competitive Positioning

QUESTIONS MEAN MODE STD. DEV.  VAR SUM
The company has a strategy to attract and retain customers  4.59  5 1.137 1.293 6591
 The incumbent competitors have products or services that can compete with your company’s products or services successfully  4.44  5 1.027 1.054 6373
 The incumbent competitors have the operational capacity or capacity to compete successfully against your business’s product or services 4.48  5 .986  .973 6328
 Your company has introduced your products and services and established a position in the marketplace undetected by your competitors 4.85  5 .983 .967  6933
 Specific competitors can be successful in responding to your entry in the market  4.87 5 .985  .970 6972
 Your product or service can address 20% of the market size 5.00 5 .944  .891 7091
 Our product or service is essential to our prospective customers  4.91  5 1.033 1.067 7026
 Our core product or service is also a core product or service for our competitors  4.95 5 .932 .869 7089
 Meetings with potential lead customers confirm the must-have nature of our goods or services  4.71 5 1.060  1.123 6743
 Competitors activities confirm that the market is demanding solution like our product or services as must-haves rather than nice-to-haves  4.57 4 .997 .995 6503
 Our product or service fills gaps in the current product or service offerings of our competitors  4.58 5 1.056 1.114 6549
 Many early adopters, like to purchase your product and services within the first 1 to 2 years after launch  4.45  4 1.153  1.330 6339
 The early adopters of your products or services are nurtured when captured  4.61 5 .979  .958 6588
 Competitors face barriers in responding to your innovative products or services  4.64  5 1.050 1.102 6646
 Competitors chose to depend on their current market position aggressively in response to the entry of your product or services into market 4.64  5 1.155 1.333 6644

 

More also, on whether their company can complete relatively well with other telecommunication companies within the country. Most of the respondents perceived their respective company could complete well with others, as the majority of them “agreed” with the questions. Table (3) above shows the average responses to questions relating to competitive positioning ranging from 4.45 to 4.95. Managers are aware of their roles even at times of change in the competitive market.

4.2 Descriptive Statistics of Competitive Positioning

It was observed that 371 respondents (24.9%) strongly agreed that the company has a strategy to attract and retain customers. 436 respondents (30.4%) agreed while 346 respondents (24.1%) fairly agreed. However, 248 respondents (17.3%) fairly disagreed, 23 respondents (1.6%) disagreed and 11 respondents (0.8%) strongly disagreed.

208 respondents represent (14.5 %) strongly agreed that the incumbent competitors have products or services that can compete with your company’s products or services successfully. Similarly, 539 respondents (37.6%) agreed, and 407 respondents (28.4%) fairly agreed. But it was also observed that 248 respondents (17.3%) fairly disagreed 25 respondents (1.7%) disagreed and 09 respondents (0.6%) strongly disagreed. 395 respondents representing (27.5%) strongly agreed that their company has introduced your products and services and established a position in the marketplace undetected by your competitors. It was also observed that 571 respondents (39.8%) agreed while 360 respondents (25.1%) fairly agreed. However, 72 respondents (5.0%) fairly disagreed; 20 respondents (1.4%) disagreed and 12 respondents (0.8%) strongly disagreed.

It was observed that 413 respondents representing (28.8%) strongly agreed that specific competitors could be successful in responding to your entry in the market. Similarly, 569 respondents (39.7%) agreed, and 47 respondents (24.2%) fairly agreed. However, 66 respondents fairly disagreed, 27 respondents disagreed, and 09 respondents (0.6%) strongly disagree, 502 respondents representing (35.0%) strongly agreed that your product or service could address 20% of the market size 508 respondents (35.4%) agreed and 341 respondents (23.8%) fairly agreed. It is also observed that 52 respondents (3.6%) fairly disagreed, four respondents (0.3%) disagreed and 11 respondents (0.8%) strongly disagreed.

It was observed that 428 respondents (29.8%) strongly agreed that our product or services are essential to our prospective customers. Similarly, 625 respondents (43.6%) agreed while 278 respondents fairly agreed. In contrast, 50 respondents (3.5%) fairly disagreed, 22 respondents (1.5%) disagreed and 27 respondents (1.9%) strongly disagreed, 433 respondents (30.35) strongly agree, 634 respondents (44.2%) agreed, and 249 respondents (17.4%) fairly agreed that core product or service is also a core or services for our competitors. It was also observed that 97 respondents fairly disagreed, 16 respondents disagreed, and two respondents (0.1%) strongly disagreed.

It was observed that 339 respondent (23.6 %) strongly agreed that meeting with potential lead customers confirms the must-have nature of our products or services. In the same vein, 589 respondents (41.0%) agreed, and 310 respondents (21.6%) fairly agree. But 152 respondents (10.6%) fairly disagreed while 27 respondents (1.9%) disagreed and 14 respondents (1.0%) strongly disagreed. 260 respondents representing (18.1%) strongly agreed, 486 respondents (33.9%) agreed and 541 respondents (37.7%) Fairly agreed respectively that competitors’ activities confirm that the market is demanding solution like our product or services as must haves rather nice to haves. In contrast 105 respondents (7.3%) fairly agreed, 04 respondents (0.3%) disagreed and 26 respondents (1.8%) strongly disagreed.

It was also observed that 275 respondents (19.2%) strongly agreed that our product or service fills gaps in the current product or services offerings to our competitors. Similarly, 520 respondents (36.2%) agreed, and 461 respondents (32.1%) fairly agreed. However, 137 respondents (9.5%) fairly disagreed, and six respondents (0.4%) disagreed while 32 respondents (2.2%) strongly disagreed. Some respondents 314 representing (21.9%) strongly agreed that many new adopters like to purchase products and services within the first 1 to 2 years from launch. But 339 respondents (23.6%) agreed with 538 respondents constituting (37.5%) fairly agreed. None the less, 175 respondents (12.2%) fairly disagreed, 24 respondents (1.7%) disagreed and 35 respondents (2.4%) strongly disagreed.

In another observation, 274 respondents constituting (19.1%) strongly agreed that the early adopters of products or services are nurtured when captured. In a similar vein, 523 respondents (36.4%) agreed with 461 respondents (32.1%) fairly agreed. In contrast, 147 respondents (10.2%) fairly disagreed as 19 respondents (1.3%) disagreed and six respondents (0.4%) strongly disagreed. A fair size of the respondents (322) representing (22.4%) strongly agreed that competitors face barriers in responding to your innovative products or services. In the similar vein, 537 respondents (37.4%) agreed with 328 respondents (22.9%) fairly agreed. However, 136 respondents (9.5%) fairly disagreed, 59 respondents disagree while 21 respondents (1.5%) strongly disagreed.

4.3 Test of Hypothesis

Table 4: Model Summary

Model R R Square Adjusted R Square Std. Error of the Estimate
1 .501a .251 .251 .919

a. Predictors: (Constant), There is assistance from the project owners, project infrastructure, training specialist to create a supportive environment, Once the implementation has taken place user involvement in the project begins, Good ideas for change are hidden and used for personal agendas, The project lead for the change is known, and project champions aid the planning and implementation, The process of implementation of the change is flexible and reactive.

Table 5: ANOVAª

 

 

Model

Sum of Squares Df Mean Square F Sig.
1 Regression 1769.831 5 353.966 419.211 .000b
Residual 5271.356 6243 .844
Total 7041.187 6248

a. Dependent Variable: There is feeling that everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives

b. Predictors: (Constant), There is assistance from the project owners, project infrastructure, training specialist to create a supportive environment, Once the implementation has taken place user involvement in the project begins, Good ideas for change are hidden and used for personal agendas, The project lead for the change is known, and project champions aid the planning and implementation, The process of implementation of the change is flexible and reactive.

Table 6: Coefficients

Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients T Sig.
B Std. Error Beta
 

1

(Constant) .481 .092 5.253 .000
The project lead for the change is known, and project champions aid the planning and implementation .126 .011 .139 11.677 .000
Good ideas for change are hidden and used for personal agendas -.029 .011 -.030 -2.568 .010
The process of implementation of the change is flexible and reactive .249 .015 .198 16.516 .000
Once the implementation has taken place user involvement in the project begins .228 .014 .200 16.453 .000
There is assistance from the project owners, project infrastructure, training specialist to create a supportive environment .332 .013 .293 25.770 .000


Result:
To test this hypothesis, primary data was used. Questions relating to the hypothesis were picked, and weight before the regression was built.
The Dependent variables (y) for this model is the question; there is the feeling that everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives.
The independent variables are:

  • There is assistance from the project owners, project infrastructure, (x31) training specialist to create a supportive environment.
  • Once the implementation has taken place user involvement in the project begins (x32)
  • Good ideas for change are hidden and used for personal agendas
  • The project lead for the change is known, and project champions aid the planning and implementation (x34)
  • The process of implementation is flexible and reactive (x35).

The ANOVA table (table 5) shows a significant value of 0.000 with the sum of squares regression 1769.831 and sum of squares residual to be 5271.356. The model is significant, which implies that the model is adequate in establishing the relationship between the dependent and independent variable.
The model summary (table 4) shows that there is a weak positive relationship between the dependent and the independent variable (R=0.501). Also, the coefficient of determination is 0.251 which implies that about 23.1% variation change focused on the same goals and objectives is caused by the joint effect of the independent variables considered. The model standard error is 0.919. All the independent variables considered are significant with a sig. Values less than 0.05 significance level.

The Model is:
y3= 0.481+0.126X31+0.029X32+0.249X33+0.228X34+0.332X35
We then conclude by accepting the alternative hypothesis and conclude that, there is significant relationship between change implementation and competitive positioning.

5. Discussion

There is a significant relationship between change implementation and competitive positioning. The outcome of these findings confirms that change implementation is an integral path of change management that sustains competitive positioning. Dicke (2012) suggest that in implementing change, it is important not to apply generic solutions to local challenges but rather a customized solution which has not been imported from another organizational context.

Downs (2012) suggest that in implementing planned change, an attempt is made to produce some change in individual employees, work group and or the entire organization. In the same, vein, organizational change management methods and tools during change implementation can play an important role to facilitate change in process as well as in the corporate culture.

Doorewaard and Bens (2002) also supported the findings of this research. However, Dann (2010), suggest that in implementing change, and understanding change management process, should be in the context of organizational culture. Hughes (2011) share a similar view with the research findings that a change implementation process is a tool for the development of an organization and its effectiveness as a system. It is through the deliberate and disciplined action of management that organizations effectively implement change initiative that cultivates success (Lewis 2000).

Many change projects have been abandoned mid-implementation after huge funds and management time has been committed. It is a pity that some of the organizations with this kind of regrettable experience have either not recovered fully from the wasted investment or have ceased to exist. For instance, efforts to automate the operations of various federal and state governments’ ministries and agencies in Nigeria are far from being realized in spite of the huge amounts of money and time that have been committed to these tasks over time. Many of the projects have been abandoned, and there is hardly any government ministry in Nigeria that is fully automated. Another example is the national identity card program embarked upon by the Nigerian government more than two decades ago. The change was resisted, but the government went ahead with it. However, from all indications, the project has been abandoned and all economic, financial and other resources committed have been wasted. The pre-implementation stage is a foundation for the implementation stage. Faulty pre-implementation programs often culminate in serious problems implies that all the five independent variables contribute to the dependent variable (there is a feeling that everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives). The model derived is significant; therefore we then concluded by accepting the alternative hypothesis which says that there is a significant relationship between change implementation and competitive positioning. The objective, to illustrate of the Significance of Change Implementation on Competitive positioning was attained.

This objective was tested using primary data extracted from the questionnaire administered. Five independent variables were used to test the hypothesis, and it was observed that the significant value was 0.000 from the F-test. All the five independent variables were significant which implies that all the five independent variables contribute to the dependent variable (there is a feeling that everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives). The model derived is significant; therefore, we then concluded by accepting the alternative hypothesis which says that there is a significant relationship between change implementation and competitive positioning. The objective, to illustrate of the Significance of Change Implementation on Competitive positioning was attained. There is no significant relationship between change implementation and competitive positioning.
Summary of findings

6. Conclusion

Change implementation contributes significantly to competitive positioning. It can be asserted that the process of implementation of the change is flexible and that there is a predetermined guideline for how the implementation is to be managed. They are listed as incentives that are linked to implementation to aid the process of change, the change is being implemented by people with the necessary core skills, and everyone is focused on the same goals and objectives. Organizations are now finding it harder to cope with the myriads of changes necessitated by environmental adjustments so as to maximize competitive positioning. Hence, this study aimed at determining the empirical relationship between change management and competitive positioning that truncate the process of change at the implementation stage.

According to Ogilvie and Stork (2002), it is necessary for management to set up a standing committee to be proactive in identifying problems and resistance during the implementation and finding solutions immediately. When it cannot prevent problem and resistance, it should at least find effective solutions. The standing committee should be composed of all departments affected by the process change and should meet on a regular basis and when the need arises to discuss problems and solutions.

Min- Chew, Cheng and Lazarevic (2006) submit in their research that to identify the key steps that could improve the management of change, literature relating to organizational culture, the need for change, types of change and resistance to change was used. The research has demonstrated how well-planned change helps to ensure that change is implemented successfully. Critical to successful change is the alignment of organizational culture to support these new processes.

Lewin identified three steps to change: unfreezing, moving and refreezing (Lewis 2000). Minimizing barriers to change and maximizing the opportunities of change efforts are accentuated in the unfreezing process. In the moving stage, recognition of a need for change and the acceptance of change have to take place in the workforce. Accordingly, managers as change agents are expected to restore or reinforce the new system actively with all employees in the freezing step. This simple three-step model explains the importance of implementing successful change by unfreezing the existing situation followed by change movement and making the new behaviors and norms absolute.
According to Chew, Cheng and Petrovic, (2006), change efforts mainly focused on business and cost driven initiatives. This observation suggests that organizational leaders should give careful attention to how each activity can be designed and well integrated when planning and implementing organizational change.

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