Maintaining a Strong Brand with a chain of business entities

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Maintaining a Strong Brand with a chain of business entities

 

 

Strong brandJenny and her family love to visit Kenya. They love the sandy beaches, the ragged Masaai Mara and the green lash highlands. During their last visit, they stayed in a beautiful lodge in a small town that was not too far from the capital city. Although the hotel and its architecture was not very modern, Jenny loved the attention that was extended to them by all members of staff at the hotel. Her family relished the variety of the sumptuous food, they basked in the attention and enjoyed the scenic environment. They talked about their holiday destination for days on end.

Escaping the cold winter again, they made their way back to Kenya last December. Unfortunately their preferred hotel was fully booked and would not be available long after their holiday was over. Upon sensing their disappointment the lady at the reservation offered them accommodation at a different location under the same chain of hotels. They were overjoyed. The lady informed them that the outfit was much newer than the one they had visited the year before and assured them of a fabulous time at their new destination.

The hotel was indeed much newer than the previous one and although the theme in architecture and design was consistent, the current location seemed to adopt a more modern feel to it. Their journey had been delayed by heavy traffic jam and so they arrived at the hotel just in time for supper. With anticipation, the children dived into the buffet but were greatly disappointed by the lack of variety in the array of food on display. Anyway, they figured that since they had checked in late, the other guests must have done justice to the food set up.

The following morning, their fears were confirmed. The hotel did not display a variety of food as their previous destination. Sadly, the staff members were neither enthusiastic about serving them nor willing to go the extra mile as their counterparts in the sister unit. Jenny noticed that some of the food was not very fresh either. She decided to approach the manager of the hotel to ensure that her family enjoyed the rest of their short stay. Although the manager was very happy to hear her out, he was unable to make much change. He let her know that decisions on matters pertaining the hotel were made at the head office and that most of their supplies were also controlled from and by the head office. He had very minimal authority and lee way to change things around.

As business owners, decisions to have control and measures should be carefully examined to avoid causing inconveniences to the service providers on the ground as well as the customer themselves. Control can be exercised through a system of accountability and responsibility in order to facilitate prompt actions and allow room for creativity.

For optimal success in a chain of business entities, you could consider incorporating the following:

Consistency

Consistency does not mean that every detail is matched against the other to the letter or that treatment extended to the customers is duplicated word for word, action for action. Consistency requires that you adhere to certain set standards whether in your products or quality of service. These standards should be clearly communicated to all staff and repeated often so that they become like an organisational culture and the back bone for all their transactions.

Cut the Bureaucracy

Empowerment of your staff members is the first step to having strong accountability among your employees. When people learn that you can trust them enough to make decisions on their own, they get a sense of belonging. This motivates them to take their responsibilities as partners in the business and not as mere employees enabling them to put in effective and efficient in place.

An incentive to ensure that costs are kept realistic in such a set up would be to either sign contracts that include financial aspects and other crucial attributes or to have units compare themselves in matters such as staff satisfaction, customer rating, cost effectiveness etc.

Creativity & Initiative
Jenny and her family love to visit Kenya. They love the sandy beaches, the ragged Masaai Mara and the green lash highlands. During their last visit, they stayed in a beautiful lodge in a small town that was not too far from the capital city. Although the hotel and its architecture was not very modern, Jenny loved the attention that was extended to them by all members of staff at the hotel. Her family relished the variety of the sumptuous food, they basked in the attention and enjoyed the scenic environment. They talked about their holiday destination for days on end.

Escaping the cold winter again, they made their way back to Kenya last December. Unfortunately their preferred hotel was fully booked and would not be available long after their holiday was over. Upon sensing their disappointment the lady at the reservation offered them accommodation at a different location under the same chain of hotels. They were overjoyed. The lady informed them that the outfit was much newer than the one they had visited the year before and assured them of a fabulous time at their new destination.

The hotel was indeed much newer than the previous one and although the theme in architecture and design was consistent, the current location seemed to adopt a more modern feel to it. Their journey had been delayed by heavy traffic jam and so they arrived at the hotel just in time for supper. With anticipation, the children dived into the buffet but were greatly disappointed by the lack of variety in the array of food on display. Anyway, they figured that since they had checked in late, the other guests must have done justice to the food set up.

The following morning, their fears were confirmed. The hotel did not display a variety of food as their previous destination. Sadly, the staff members were neither enthusiastic about serving them nor willing to go the extra mile as their counterparts in the sister unit. Jenny noticed that some of the food was not very fresh either. She decided to approach the manager of the hotel to ensure that her family enjoyed the rest of their short stay. Although the manager was very happy to hear her out, he was unable to make much change. He let her know that decisions on matters pertaining the hotel were made at the head office and that most of their supplies were also controlled from and by the head office. He had very minimal authority and lee way to change things around.

As business owners, decisions to have control and measures should be carefully examined to avoid causing inconveniences to the service providers on the ground as well as the customer themselves. Control can be exercised through a system of accountability and responsibility in order to facilitate prompt actions and allow room for creativity.

For optimal success in a chain of business entities, you could consider incorporating the following:

Consistency

Consistency does not mean that every detail is matched against the other to the letter or that treatment extended to the customers is duplicated word for word, action for action. Consistency requires that you adhere to certain set standards whether in your products or quality of service. These standards should be clearly communicated to all staff and repeated often so that they become like an organisational culture and the back bone for all their transactions.

Cut the Bureaucracy

Empowerment of your staff members is the first step to having strong accountability among your employees. When people learn that you can trust them enough to make decisions on their own, they get a sense of belonging. This motivates them to take their responsibilities as partners in the business and not as mere employees enabling them to put in effective and efficient in place.

An incentive to ensure that costs are kept realistic in such a set up would be to either sign contracts that include financial aspects and other crucial attributes or to have units compare themselves in matters such as staff satisfaction, customer rating, cost effectiveness etc.

Creativity & Initiative

Always give more than the customer expects. Go out of your way to do things differently. Listen more to the customers’ needs. Many times we give excuses for our poor service by blaming the policies and procedures set down. These are only guidelines for our daily routine. To go beyond the call of duty is the reason you are in business in the first place. Everyone else around you is offering the same service and products as you, what sets you apart is the extra mile you go to in order to give your customer the highest and best experience. Take initiative, be creative about solutions, be more to the customer and deliver more with enthusiasm and joy.

Be more. Do more.

To your success.

Always give more than the customer expects. Go out of your way to do things differently. Listen more to the customers’ needs. Many times we give excuses for our poor service by blaming the policies and procedures set down. These are only guidelines for our daily routine. To go beyond the call of duty is the reason you are in business in the first place. Everyone else around you is offering the same service and products as you, what sets you apart is the extra mile you go to in order to give your customer the highest and best experience. Take initiative, be creative about solutions, be more to the customer and deliver more with enthusiasm and joy.

Be more. Do more.

To your success.

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