The effects of nepotism on the growth of a business can never be overemphasized. Actually, it has been a clog on the wheel of most businesses. It is painful and discouraging when a loyal employee, due for promotion, is relegated in favour of another who is not qualified for that particular position but is accepted because he or she is the Boss’s relative.
Unfortunately, most business owners are not aware of the far-reaching consequences nepotism has on their business growth. Indirectly, this scenario encourages what we call ‘eye-service’ in the workplace. Every employee wants to be in ‘Oga’s good books’ by behaving a certain way in his presence – to get his favour – and in his absence, act in a certain way which on the long run affects the business negatively. They do this not because they hate the organization but because of the insecurity they feel with regards to their being promoted based on their efforts in growing the business and not the bias that comes from their Boss’s nepotistic tendencies.
Nepotism affects employee’s psychology making them feel that since they don’t stand a chance of being promoted or their efforts being recognized, they shouldn’t bother working hard or putting in their best; having it at the back of their minds that their Boss’s relative will always be preferred over them. Over time, employees’ passion for the job declines and everyone tends towards ‘eye-servicing’ because they feel that no matter how good they are and what values they have added to the company, their efforts will go unrecognized.
When employees do not give their best to the organization, it negatively affects the quality of the service rendered and in time, customers complaints starts soaring and subsequently a withdrawal in patronage occurs and this causes the business revenue to decline because income is generated when money is exchanged for products or services offered by the business to their customers. When there are no customers or a few customers, you know what that implies.
In addition, most business owners should take the bull by the horn to put an end to this workplace mayhem since this problem largely stems from them. Employees love to work in an environment where their career advancement prospects is certain against an atmosphere that stifles their potentials. As much as we love our relatives, if they aren’t best fit for a position and you have a loyal staff who is due for that position, why not allow him or her occupy that position?
Although we have looked at nepotism as it concerns promotions, it also plays out in other areas at the workplace like when taking disciplinary action to staff for unruly behavior. Everyone should be subject to same rules and principles, and not selective administration of penalties.
Written by Rejoice Emmanuel
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Whilst an increased pay could be a motivating factor for most employees, some however have proven that their dedication hasn’t been driven by money. Even though they look forward to earning more than they currently do, they never allowed that to get in the way of delivering their work.
We had a better understanding of this when we interviewed Dele Babalola, a HSE/M Officer with over six years of experience. Even with the many responsibilities attached to his title, from identifying all risk causing factors that could delay work progress, bring harm to staff, damages to equipment. Basically, he handles the maintenance and repairs of all hospital equipment and property as well as logistics for the hospital operation and demands, and still, Dele ensures that he executes them all excellently.
“Work has made me target oriented,” he said, indicating how his work has impacted his life.
It is one thing to start a career but finding a need to be met in that chosen career is something most employees often don’t think about. Dele, on the other hand, has found a need in his profession and as such has never considered a career change. “There are health challenges and staff wellbeing to consider,” Dele said.
Even though the progress he has made in his career so far has been accompanied by more demands, Dele believes that it’s all part of being an employee.
“My work has been filled with promotion, more responsibilities with little financial increase. They said the benefit of a reliable employee is more work.”
As regards his finances, Dele said, “it has been a steady growth,” and quickly added, “an increase in pay never hurts.”
Despite the challenge of low pay, Dele desires more knowledge that would increase his efficiency, “More training would help me become more efficient.”
When asked if he has a side hustle, Dele admitted, “yes, because salary no matter how much is always budgeted before it even gets to you.”
Dele Babalola ended his interview with these simple words of advice directed to young career people, “keep being focused, constantly improve your skill set, certifications go a long way. Be humble, diligent and dedicated.”
Written by Jennifer Chioma Amadi
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A phone brand with variety of ringtones almost half of Nigerians cannot forget is Nokia. With its different models that came in different shapes and sizes with different abilities, Nokia sure did leave a mark on the walls of the telecommunication market in Nigeria. It had a grand entrance into the market and enjoyed a good season of dominance.
Interestingly, with time and as new brands emerged with different technologies and innovations, Nokia began to lose its stand and at some point was wiped out of the Nigerian market. Determined to spring back to its feet, Nokia through its partnership with Microsoft produced new products to satisfy the ever craving Nigerian market.
Regardless of what must have gone wrong, it is undeniable that Nokia is a remarkable brand and there are many lessons to learn from its brand story. So brace yourself as we dissect one of the historical brands ever – Nokia.
Nokia, what we now know as one of the most popular multinational telecommunications brands in the world went from one industry to another before venturing and becoming known for production of mobile phones. Here is how it transited.
In the early period of 1865, May 12th precisely, Fedrik Idestam, a mining engineer, founded Nokia in Finland. In that year, the brand did not start as a telecommunication brand rather it commenced as a single paper mill operation. The company went public with the name Nokia Ab in 1871 when Leo Mechelin, Idestam’s friend joined hands with him.
Like most partnership, Idestam and Mechelin did not agree on everything. At some point, Mechelin wanted to expand the company into the electricity business but Idestam declined the idea. In 1896, Idestam retired and Mechelin became the company’s chairperson. Nevertheless, after Idestam had retired in 1896, Mechelin pushed his idea to the company’s shareholders and eventually Nokia became an electricity company in 1902.
Due to its near bankruptcy after World War I, Suomen Gummitehdas Oy, popularly known as Finnish Rubber Works, acquired Nokia. It was a company founded in 1898 by Eduard Polon, a business leader. The Finnish Rubber Works subsequently acquired Suomen Kaapelitehdas Oy (Finnish Cable Work). This new company was into the production of telephone, telegraph and electrical cables.
While Nokia Ab, Suomen Gummitehdas, and Suomen Kaapelitehdas were under the same roof, they did not merge legally but became a viable group.
However, in 1967, the three companies merged to form Nokia Corporation. This new establishment manufactured products like paper items, car and bicycle tyres, rubber boots, communications cables, televisions and other consumer electronics, personal computers, generators, robotics, capacitors, military technology and equipment (such as the SANLA M/90 device and the M61 gas mask for the Finnish Army), plastics, aluminium and chemicals.
The company ran for close to fifteen years within which it experienced loss at some points, giving birth to a new focus on mobile phone technologies. From the merger between Nokia and Salora, in 1979, the Nordic Mobile Telephone (NMT) network called 1G, which became the first fully automatic cellular phone system, was developed.
In order to create better phone models, Nokia purchased Salora in 1984. Following the success of this, in 1987, Nokia launched its first mobile phone “Mobira Cityman 900” for NMT– 900 networks that was able to accommodate data.
After gaining its ground in the mobile phone industry, Nokia commenced operations in over 130 countries connecting millions of people all over the world.
Nokia explains its vision simply, “we create the technology to connect the world.”
The brand has operated with solid values over the years. Here they are;
As more competitions arose among the mobile phone brands, in 2008, Nokia’s market share fell to 40.8 percent. Even though Nokia tried to get back its position in the market by releasing new models like N97 touchscreen device, it still experienced some loss in 2009.
Even with the losses, Nokia refused to give into the pressure to switch to producing Android based smartphones and continued to focus on producing more Symbian based smartphones which were no longer selling in the market. This again saw their market shares drop further in 2010.
In search of a remedy, Nokia went into partnership with Microsoft. Because of this partnership, Nokia adopted Windows Phone as the operating system for the smartphones it produced from 2011. Nokia took a more courageous step on the 25 April 2014 to sell its mobile phone business to Microsoft for £3.79bn.
Despite all the pitfalls, Nokia continues to bounce back, proving itself as a hard nut to crack. In recent times, it has embraced new technologies, thereby enhancing the quality of its products. It has made its return into market with more vibrancy, and has gained back its visibility.
DID YOU KNOW
- The name Nokia was coined from a town called Nokia and the Nokianvirta River.
- By the end of 2013, 10,000 employees had been dismissed
- In the 1980s, Nokia’s computer division “Nokia Data”, produced a series of personal computers called the “MikroMikko” in the 1980s
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If we compile all the names of different enterprises in this world, they could sum up to over a billion. The whole word could seem too farfetched so let us bring it home; walking along a busy road here in Nigeria, there is a high probability you would see at least twenty different names of businesses at every turn of your neck. Though each of these twenty try to make a statement of their own, only a handful, if at all any, will succeed in communicating with you.
Bringing it further down to your neighbourhood, can you remember all the names of the little shops on your street even after residing there for many years? The answer is likely a no! You might put the blame on your memory or accuse yourself of not paying attention to details. The truth remains; the names of these little shops did not leave an impression on you and could not register in your mind.
However, the light bulb in your brain practically turns up when you hear names like MTN, Coca-Cola, Facebook, Indomie, Microsoft, DSTV, Toyota, Samsung, Google, SPAR, TOTAL, etc. You might conclude that these are big brands that are well recognised. Yes, this is true but do not forget that they were not as big as they are when they started. The difference is the names of these popular brands have continued to speak loudly for everyone one to hear.
Choosing a business name is an imperative criteria for any enterprise and it is not as simple as you may think. Merely picking a name that sounds good to your ears might not be a wise business choice. Deciding on a business name requires a lot of brainstorming and deep research in your chosen market. It demands you devote quality time defining each term you wish to use to ensure it connects with your business or the kind of brand you want to build.
You may be asking why you should go through so much stress for a brand name and fail to realise one fact, a business name, in most cases, is the first thing potential clients would meet before they encounter the owner. The name of a business becomes its identity and carries the brand’s message. It is the voice that gently calls out to customers beckoning on them to patronise the business. Now let’s look at a few steps you could take to give your business name a voice.
Firstly, do not think you know it all, consult professionals. Most people consider consultation a waste of time and money, and move straight into making decisions that end up marring all their efforts. With the right strategic advice and plan from a professional, you can be sure that every aspect of your brand will stand out from the crowd.
Secondly go for a name that is easy to remember. Simple names stick longer in the minds of people and communicate to them better. So avoid any name that is too complicated and hard to remember. Also, before you settle for any name, do a proper check to ensure no other company has used that name before.
Thirdly, add some creativity to the name that leaves people curious to the name. Don’t mistaken plainness for simplicity. Keeping your business name, short and simple doesn’t mean you should go for a plain name that literally gives your business away or sounds too mundane. Depending on the nature of your intended business or brand personality, you could also introduce a little mystery to the name that stirs up curiosity in the minds of people.
Lastly, be certain the services or products your business offers lives up to its name. It is not enough to have a brilliant name and then deliver poorly. Customers will always link your business name to the quality of your services. So whilst you have a striking business name, it could also have a bad reputation.
Extra Tip: A name is not merely about the alphabetic letters, but about the reputation, perception and values it represents.
With these simple steps and a strong publicity to increase the visibility of the business name, you can be rest assured that your brand will not just be in the minds of people, but also in their hearts.
Written by Jennifer Chioma Amadi
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Some logos make a statement and leave a lasting impression from just a single sight. There is just that distinctive thing about such logos. They have gone a long way to give the brand more visibility and recognition with the passing of time. Well you may be thinking its rocket science, but it’s simply the detailed and quality reasoning behind the logo that makes it stand out. One of those very distinctive and elegant logos is TOTAL’s.
TOTAL is a multinational oil and gas company founded in 1924 in France. It is considered as one of the “Big Six” oil companies in the world. At first the company was known as Compagnie française des pétroles (CFP). In 1954 the company initiated the word TOTAL which represents a brand of gasoline in the African continent and Europe introduced by CFP. Subsequently, in 1991, the company embraced the name TOTAL, making it the identity of its brand as a company.
This officially made TOTAL the flagship name of the prestigious Oil and Gas Company. Since then the brand has continued to enjoy steady recognition and acceptance from both stakeholders and customers all over the world. Hold on tight as we take a deep dive into the TOTAL logo.
From our research, which formed the basis for articles like Coca Cola and Toyota, so far we have observed that the logos of a good number of brands have evolved overtime. The reason for this sometimes is new logos are created to suit the brand’s new market position at every point in time. This is also the case for prestigious brand, TOTAL.
On one July 14 (Bastille Day), the “Super Carburant Total” brand was launched. It was the very first TOTAL logo that made a public appearance. The logo signifies the logo’s French nationality with the name TOTAL written in red letters against a white background between two blue triangles. When marketing operations expanded, TOTAL branded products were then introduced.
In 1955, the logo was transformed to a gas pump like logo. Again, this logo magnified the French theme, with a red flame on a blue circle against a white background.
What followed next was the blue-white-red symbol in 1963. It was soften and relatable and was often referred to as the “soap bar”.
Maintaining three colours, in 1970 the brand again felt the need to redesign its logo to indicate what the brand stood for. The new logo’s colours, the bolder characters and the structure in an horizontal manner expressed the stability and strength, unlike the previous logo with diagonal design indicating the martial spirit of conquest.
1982 saw the birth of a new trademark. It broadened the previous patriotic symbolism of France. The bright red colour represented strength and power while the blue stood for assertiveness and friendliness for the warm orange.
With the same spirit, in 1991-1992, the trademark block was revamped with more energetic lettering. The interior of the logo was made simpler while the rounded edges were replaced with sharper edges indicating a fiercer drive and also brighter colours. The horizontal lines were lighter and the space between letters were reduced and the stripes were narrower. This made the brand more accessible.
Finally in 2003, after a successful merger between PetroFina and Elf Aquitaine, the logo took an entirely new shape different from the previous ones. This new logo gave the brand a new identity which has registered strongly in most minds.
In 2003, as a way of adopting a name that would accommodate the two mergers between TOTAL and FINA in 1999 and TOTALFINA and ELF in 2000, the management decided to go with the TOTAL. This name was strategically chosen as one that would leave a lasting impression on consumers worldwide.
For the Group, the name TOTAL communicates the brand’s wider international visibility and recognition. Following this, a new logo had to be created to also represent what the brand stands for – one of which being the fact that the company pays close attention to the quality of products and services it offers its consumers. The company had to undergo total rebranding from picking a name to designing a new logo, both connecting and sharing the brand’s values.
Unlike the previous logos, the new logo is characterized by spherical elements with different colours. These elements express the company’s universal commitment in the energy field. These spherical elements signify exchanges of energy and human resources which further enhances international social and economic growth.
Defining the logo a bit more, the spherical symbol envelopes the image of multiple energy flows. This represents the different aspect the company deals in from oil, to gas, to electric energy and all other forms of alternative energy, such as solar and wind power. The logo shows the new market position TOTAL has taken as an energy Group and not streamlined to the oil it was known for. It constantly communicates its position as a symbol of energy through its logo.
The logo goes a long way to share TOTAL ideology about energy stating that energy arises not only from primary energy resources, but also from all of its human resources and, in particular, from all of the resources in the sphere of the Group’s industrial and commercial activities.
It can be observed that the TOTAL logo is one crafted by deep thinking which practically represents the brands totally.
Written by Jennifer Chioma Amadi
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“I particularly think sunny days come with many hitches; the scorch, the sweat, the constant dehydration. Today is one of those days and the last thing I can stand is a heated office argument. That would only add to the ache pounding in my head, all thanks to the blazing sun.
This was why when a certain colleague of mine started the talk about the recent elections in that his usual loud manner, I quietly left for the other office. I still needed the little sanity I had left and just couldn’t afford to waste it on an argument with him. I knew him too well; his biased nature always gave him away on different topics. He was one who would never give in to his opponent’s opinion neither did he ever try to respect boundaries.
From the other office I could hear voices raised, each person defending their preferred candidate and their different political parties. An outsider would think it was a political rally instead of a corporate firm. Minutes later, out of the chaotic atmosphere I heard a slap and then punches followed before I knew it clothes were ripped. I couldn’t believe this was happening. The fact that adults would pick a fight because of a mere argument left me perplexed.
Later that day, the culprits were summoned by the HR manager and our boss. Trouble hovered in the sudden silence because we could tell what may come their way. The following day we learnt they had been given some punishment and everyone was banned from discussing about politics in the workplace….”
The story described above gives a mild description of what controversial topics like politics could result to. It is the season of elections and most people would be tempted to get involved in fierce political discussions anywhere they find themselves.
There is nothing wrong with having a political discussion but since the workplace is filled with people who have different ideologies concerning every life issue, it’s always advisable to avoid conversations that cause disputes. From research, topics like politics come with a lot of strife because people would always prefer one candidate to the other.
Many persons are passionate about a political party they believe is in line with their value system. It is a case of different strokes for different folks. The reality is not everyone will accept or promote your candidate and any attempt to force your belief down anybody’s throat could result into an ugly quarrel or fight.
Asides from steamed conversations, other things that can stir up strife are; wearing campaign attires to work, mocking other political candidates that could be your co-workers’ favourite etc. It is important that workers avoid anything that would trigger misunderstandings. This doesn’t imply that one shouldn’t have their opinion, on the contrary they should. However, if the idea is to spite others, then it is not worth it.
One important thing workers need to value in any workplace they find themselves is their relationship with fellow colleagues. Heated arguments like the scenario described above can ruin both one’s reputation and one’s relationship with co-workers. When this happens, team work becomes tedious and unproductive.
In a case where the political disposition of employees goes overboard, the employer has every right to ban any form of such discussions. In fact rules should be put in place to ensure there is mutual respect. Workers should always be conscious of the fact that the work environment is strictly designed for business, to achieve corporate goals and not for personal sentiments.
Written by Jennifer Chioma Amadi
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Mrs. Chika I. A. started out her teaching career as a care giver but has risen through the profession to becoming a well-experienced expert in educational management and a proficient developer of start-up schools convincing and increasing the confidence of parents/guardians to admit their wards and thus bringing in more money to school owners in Port Harcourt. She is currently a consultant manager for schools within and outside Port Harcourt metropolis and is a staff of the Universal Basic Education Board where she teaches in one of the State Primary Schools in Port Harcourt. With over 20 years of seamless dedication, we’ll see what drives and sustains her passion in one profession most young Nigerians wouldn’t want to venture into.
As earlier mentioned Mrs. Chika began her career providing care to 0 to 1 year old babies in a private school in Port Harcourt, more than 20 years ago; long after obtaining her GCE (General Certificate of Education) in 1990 and having before then, obtained a Distinction in her first school leaving examination. With little or no degree in education, she had a rough and slow ride in advancing her career as a teacher and went in and out of teaching, sometimes freelancing as an assistant teacher (which is more or less the job description of a teacher) in some private schools paying peanuts in Port Harcourt. Her dedication, hard-work, touch of excellence and eagerness to learn and adapt to the 21st century advancements in education teaching methods, gave her an edge over her counterparts in the teaching profession. This skyrocketed her career growth and she began working in the full capacity of a Teacher and had taught for several years before obtaining her National Certificate in Education (NCE) in 2010. During our interview with her, She stated that most of the schools she taught in had parents giving good reports and recommendations as she made tangible impacts in the lives of the pupils and proprietors found it difficult letting her go. She says:
“In fact one of the proprietors I worked for, that wasn’t faithful in salary payments, almost created a scene when she knelt down on the tarred road – in public view – pleading that I should come back teaching in her school; promising to pay on time; but I had gotten a bigger offer to manage a start-up school then, so I couldn’t stay.”
Mrs. Chika developed one of the most prime and quality schools in Port Harcourt in terms of infrastructure, sophistication of teaching materials; serene, beautifully painted and well decorated child-friendly classrooms, safe playing ground and well protected balcony’s, going on to conducting and supervising the recruitment process of quality staff, developing the curriculum/scheme of work for each class, utilizing various curricula combinations (American, British, Montessori), liaising with suppliers of educational materials and getting the best deals in quality, emphasizing on the importance of extra-curricular activities, vocational skills, musical instruments prowess and ballet dance skills, swimming skills, excursions, e-learning, efficient teaching methods for special kids, amongst other educational advancements. She went on to establish more schools in that regard. Her taste for knowledge drove her to getting various educational certifications and then she applied for a Bachelor’s degree in Education. When the employment offer by the government came, she had to make a tough decision of leaving her position and its pay to a position offering less than half her pay then. This shows vividly that her passion for teaching isn’t driven by money. She resigned and is currently a staff of the Rivers State Government under the Rivers State UBE board touching the lives of less-opportune children.
Having quite an interesting career trajectory, Mrs Chika threw light on the impact and challenges she had encountered so far on her career journey. Speaking on how working has impacted her life, she declares;
“I have gained experience over the years which have made me work with much more confidence, contributing to my expertise and making me highly sought-after by school investors and directors. So, the experience I have which can’t be taken away added to my wealth of knowledge in my profession and the financial aspect – though not much, has been of great impact to me.”
In addition, she spoke on the challenges that she encounters whilst working.
“The non-supply of teaching aids and learning materials has been a major challenge so far. My employer supply what they think is basic like the board, just recently more desks for the children were brought in, and a conducive classroom. But there are some other teaching aids and learning materials that needs to facilitate teaching and learning which they ought to supply but they don’t; so it hampers the teaching and learning process. Also, the meager salary paid in these economic times is a challenge. We have to live within our means and save ahead and also stock the kitchen ahead of time because we aren’t certain when the next salary would come. ”
When asked if she faces any challenges with teaching stubborn children, she has this to say:
“In education, we don’t tag any child stubborn. Every child is unique in his or her own way.”
PROFESSIONAL ADVANCEMENTS IN TERMS OF PROMOTION and FINANCE
Besides the challenges Mrs. Chika faces whilst impacting knowledge to the upcoming generation, there has also been a stall in promotional benefits of staffs. In fact it spreads across the civil service and we know that with promotion comes an increase in finance. Expressing her disappointment, when asked her career trajectory in terms of promotion and benefits, she has this to say:
“As a civil servant, it’s not in my hands to detect. It’s the government that carries it out. Though, there ought to be promotion after every two years during which promotional interviews are conducted; but for the past 10 years now nothing like that has happened. So I depend on God who doesn’t disappoint to reward me better. Aside the loans which are given once in a while, I’m unaware of any other benefits.”
HIGH POINT OF CAREER
When asked the question: ‘What has stood out for you since you started working, in other words, what’s your best experience so far?’. She has this to say:
“The outcome of my teaching on the lives of the children and teaching itself gives me joy. Children don’t need to be grown-ups to reflect the teaching even there and then, change occurs. Education is all about change and when this change manifests in the children’s’ lives it gives me joy. When you tell a child – if it’s in the moral aspect – that this is not good, and you see that child adjust and there’s a change in behavior, you know that you have achieved your goal. When you’re teaching a subject which the child had no previous knowledge about and at the end, that child becomes a guru on that topic, you’ve achieved your goal and achieving goals makes you happy and satisfied with your job”.
As a wrap up, our interviewee gave her advice to those seeking to build a career in Teaching. She opined;
“Have genuine love for the profession and passion also. If you don’t love teaching don’t go into it. Don’t go into teaching because you want to make money. You can’t make money in the classroom. You can’t turn those children into money or you’ll be tagged a ‘ritualist’. God has a way of blessing teachers. I can’t quote in ABC terms that this is how God blesses teachers; God has his own unique way of blessing teachers. So don’t go in expecting huge mega pay because you may be frustrated but go in with the intention of helping those young ones grow in knowledge”.
Mrs. Chika added that teachers should open themselves up to opportunities for career development.
“The world is changing and so every aspect of life changes with it. We should not be rigid but easily adaptable to technological advancements in education and teaching techniques”.
From Mrs. Chika’s Perspective about the work place, it is quite obvious that growth in whatever career path you’ve chosen is driven by your passion, taste for excellence/knowledge and not just the money. In fact the money shouldn’t be the prime focus especially in the teaching profession and happiness comes when you’ve met your goals.
Written by Rejoice Emmanuel
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Most children born from the eighties can attest to the fact that they have tasted the popular Kellogg’s cornflakes. For some, it even became the quickest breakfast their mothers could fix before they dashed off to school while for others it became their favourite go-to cereal whenever they were hungry.
Whichever the case, it is an undeniable fact that the impact of the Kellogg’s brand has been felt by many people and also in many homes. The brand’s consistency for more 100years now has strengthened its relevance, establishing it as a leading brand globally.
For the last century, the Kellogg Company has done business under the trademark, Kellogg’s. This American multinational food-manufacturing company has its headquarters in Battle Creek, Michigan, United States. Kellogg’s is known for producing cereal and convenience foods, including cookies, crackers, and toaster pastries. Some of their most popular products that have become well-known brands include Corn Flakes, Keebler, and Cheez-It.
Follow through as we take a detailed ride through the rich qualities of this outstanding brand.
While trying to make granola, a breakfast food and snack food consisting of rolled oats, nuts, honey or other sweeteners, in 1898, W.K. Kellogg, and his brother, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, mistakenly altered the process and flaked wheat berry. Not relenting, W.K. continued to experiment until he flaked corn, which gave birth to what we now know as Kellogg’s Corn Flakes.
Following his successful breakthrough, in 1906, W.K. Kellogg began his company, “Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Company” and went ahead to hire 44 pioneering employees. Working closely with the founder, they created the first batch of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes and fostered W.K.’s vision for great-tasting, better-for-you breakfast foods.
Kellogg’s, in 1914, took its first step towards expansion by introducing the flagship brand, Corn Flakes, to Canada. As time went by, the Kellogg Company spread its nourishing grains abroad, by commencing operations in countries like Australia, England, Mexico, Japan, India and etc.
In 1923, the Kellogg Company took another bold step and became the first in the food industry to hire a dietician, Mary Barber. Mary pioneered the Kellogg’s Home Economics Department and defined the roles different foods played in proper diets, thereby educating their consumers.
During the time the United States sunk into Depression, in 1930, W.K. Kellogg saw it as an opportunity to add value to more people with the campaign, “I’ll invest in people.” To achieve this, he created more shifts and hired new employees. He went on to start the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, whose mission — to help children realize their potential — is also in line with that of the Kellogg Company till date.
To increase its visibility, the company used the slogan “Kellogg’s puts more into your morning” on television shows on Saturday morning from 1968 to 1970.
As a result of spreading its grains, one of the soils it fell on is the Nigeria’s soil. Though it is yet to make huge harvest, the brand has gained tremendous recognition. On the 1st of December 2017, the joint venture of the reputable cereal maker, Kellogg’s and Singapore’s Tolaram Group, Kellogg’s-Tolaram Nigeria Limited, commissioned a 6 billion naira factory, with a capacity to produce 10,000 metric tonnes of cereals per year. This move has definitely put the Kellogg’s brand on another level since it can now produce its product here in Nigeria rather than importing it.
Having realised that breakfast is the most essential meal of the day, Kellogg’s has built its walls around this. “At Kellogg, we LOVE breakfast. To us it’s so much more than just a meal. We passionately believe in the power and promise that comes from eating the right breakfast. It’s the first fuel for our bodies—nourishing us for today, tomorrow and for life.”
From the simple and concise words, the company used to describe its vision, it is without a doubt the brand has established itself as an enriching brand, “To enrich and delight the world through foods and brands that matter.”
Its purpose is simple but well defined, “Nourishing families so they can flourish and thrive.”
The company sees its values as its DNA which could be interpreted to mean what runs through the entire organisation. Their values serve as a guide for every business transaction, their interaction amongst themselves and with the communities where they work. Here is a quick rundown of their values;
In Nigeria the Kellogg’s brand leverages;
- Partnership with the local production company, Tolaram and its distribution subsidiary.
- Assets provided by its partnership to produce high quality, low cost products in the region
- Brand recognition in order to gain market share in the mid-range and value channels.
THE BRAND’S SWOT ANALYSIS
- It has an existing supply chain
- It has well-known and experienced partners, locally and globally
- It has experience in handling new markets
- It has experienced low profit in recent years
- There has been a loss of market share to general mill
- New products must be developed to suit the Nigeria market.
- The Nigerian market is still an emerging one open to businesses of all kinds
- Landing new products would require low price
- As a foreign brand, a new product must be developed for the Nigeria market
- It has strong competitors like Nestle and Unilever.
- Its operation is capital intensive.
The company continues to uphold the values its founder, W.K. Kellogg, which was instilled over 100 years ago. Today their flaked corn is enjoyed in 180 countries around the world putting it ahead of its pairs in the snack food industry.
Written by Jennifer Chioma Amadi
Do you desire to build a lasting brand? We are very resourceful and can be of great help. Shoot us an email at email@example.com.
DO BUSINESS BETTER!
Marketing could be quite a daunting task for most business people across the world. The thought of cooking up a convincing story for potential customers and clients, or going from street to street just to speak to sell their products or services, breaks beads of sweat in the faces of a good number of marketers. Regardless of the stress, marketing remains a necessity for any type of brand that wants visibility.
Now no matter how polished or good your idea, product or service is, if you can’t market it, it goes nowhere and only stays within the reach of your immediate circle. It is safe to say marketing is a means of spreading your business to a wider audience. The simple fact is, if you want more people to know what you sell, offer or the value you can create, marketing is unavoidable and inevitable.
“Marketing is an ongoing communications exchange with customers in a way that educates, informs and builds a relationship over time. The over time part is important because only over time can trust be created. With trust, a community builds organically around products and services and those customers become as excited about the products as you are — they become advocates, loyal evangelists, repeat customers and often, friends. Marketing is a really great way to identify what grabs people and gets them excited about your brand and give it to them, involve them in the process,” said Renee Blodgett – Chief Executive Officer/Founder, Magic Sauce Media
When clearly understood, marketing is not as hard as it seems. In plain terms, it is basically communicating what you do to a target audience with a goal to attain regular and loyal customers. To further simplify the concept of marketing, below are a few tips.
KNOW THE WHY BEHIND WHAT YOU DO
There are three questions you must ask yourself before you embark on your business voyage; why, what and how. In order to avoid wastage of resources, time, and efforts, these questions should be first dealt with. Basically the ‘why’ refers to the reason behind your business and seeks to answer why you started the business in the first place. The ‘what’ deals with the product or service you are rendering. The ‘what’ also addresses if you are meeting the needs of your customers. And the ‘how’ question figures the means through which you would reach the customers and clients.
However, most marketers often skip the first question why and immediately approach potential customers with what they offer. This is the reason behind the stutter when a customer tries to engage them. The reality is most people don’t know why they sell what they do!
Simon Sinek, author and marketing consultant, puts it clearly, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.”
It is of utmost importance for you as a business person to do your research and practically dig deep in order to know your target market thoroughly.
KNOW YOUR TARGET MARKET
Even though you wish everyone could patronise your business, the hard truth is not everyone can be your customer. You have to do a market survey and identify your target market if you want to hit your goal. When you don’t know your target market, you would keep missing your shots and eventually get frustrated.
LEVERAGE ON DIGITAL MARKETING
The digital era has made marketing easier than what it used to be. With digital platforms, entrepreneurs could get more customers in few days than they would in several months. Digital marketing is simply the use of the internet, mobile devices, social media, search engines, display advertising and other channels to reach your target audience.
In contrast to the traditional marketing where one needs to go from person to person advertising their products or services, or setting up outdoor platforms, marketers and entrepreneurs can now be in the comfort of their homes and spread words about their business. Another advantage asides the ease it provides, digital marketing has a wider reach. Your business could be in Nigeria but you will be able to reach people all over the world.
Once you are clear on your why, what, and how, deploy the best possible means to reach your audience whether traditionally or digitally. Just ensure that you take strategic steps to put your business out there.
Written by Jennifer Chioma Amadi
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DO BUSINESS BETTER!
One of the most visited places in the city of Port Harcourt is SPAR. During the last festive season, there was a frightening mammoth crowd pressing in at the mall’s entry point, insistent on patronizing their services and products. It won’t be far-fetched to assume that 5 out of 100 persons in Port Harcourt patronized SPAR last Christmas. The building itself was crammed up with all caliber of people similar to the scenario as was reported in various SPAR outlets within the country. This shows the popularity and far reaching effects this brand has on its customers. In fact, it is now a household name in Nigeria, found on the lips of many regular shoppers.
Surprisingly, we discovered that SPAR is an old player in the retail industry with international operations since the last 86years. The company started out being called DESPAR which is a Dutch acronym for Door Eendrachtag Samenwerken Profiteren Allen Regelmatig (In English meaning – “All benefits from joint co-operation”). This interpretation gives a summary of the SPAR brand story.
SPAR is a multinational firm which manages several individual retail stores and partners doing business under the SPAR brand name. It was founded in Netherlands by Adriaan van Well in 1932 on the premise that when marketers do business as individual entities they yield lesser results as compared to several individual wholesalers and retailers coming together in partnership to form a huge market network. They meet a wide range of consumers’ needs making very huge impacts by leveraging on the ensuing large customer base.
In 2009, SPAR International gave license to Artee Industries Limited to operate SPAR in Nigeria. SPAR stores in Nigeria are built on hypermarket retail format. Presently, SPAR is operating 10 stores across Port Harcourt, Abuja, Lagos, and Calabar accruing more than 34,000m2 of retail space, hence making it the largest chain of retail stores in Nigeria. They offer an ample variety of products in the class of Grocery, Fruits & Vegetables, Bakery, Butchery, Hot Meals, Wine & Spirits, Fast Moving Consumer Goods, Consumer Electronics, Small Home Appliances, Laptops & Tablets, Mobile Phones, Perfumes, Watches and Jewelry.
Amazingly, even when most persons aren’t aware of the business and historical facts surrounding this retail brand, they could readily recognize the brand’s logo on any item and on Ads most especially due to its constant appearance on the brands packaging materials. SPAR’s visual identity as concerns its logo, has over the years communicated the brand’s story, essence, and culture as it is proven through the successes recorded by the brand in the business world. Currently SPAR which started as one single Dutch store has over 12,770 stores in over 45 countries on four continents; meeting the needs of over 13.5 million consumers every day. Join us as we delve into the brand story of its simple but unique logo.
HISTORY OF THE LOGO
In 1932, at the inception of the organization, the symbol chosen to represent the brand and give it an identity in the hearts of its customers was the Christmas tree. Amazingly, the brands name “DE SPAR” means “The Fir” also known as the Christmas fir tree. The logo had the fir tree symbol centered boldly and the brand’s name written at its base. The debut logo also had a Dutch inscription “Koopen bijde De Spar is Sparen Bijde koop” meaning buying at the De spar is saving on buying. Eight years later, the Dutch inscription taken off but the rest of the design left as it were. To emphasize consistency in branding and identity, SPAR maintained the same logo design in all its stores worldwide.
In the late 1940s, the brands name was abbreviated from DESPAR to SPAR and so the existing logo was modified to capture this change. As years went by, other modifications in the design was made. This time, the fir tree symbol was resized to fit within the red circular band.
Increasing its Europe presence and entering into Africa and Asia, triggered the need for a more sophisticated logo to enhance its marketing strategy. So in 1968, the logo which is currently in use and can be seen in SPAR’s outlets and packaging material was introduced. The fir tree symbol had a refined outlook like an arrowhead enclosed within a green circular band and also having the SPAR element scripted within a red block base.
SPAR runs its business under four (4) store formats – SPAR, SPAR Express, EUROSPAR supermarket and INTERSPAR Hypermarket – and each of these store formats has its brand logo.
The SPAR Express logo communicates the identity of the SPAR Express store format which is to provide service and products to on-the-go shoppers in petrol stations, airports, railways and city centres. It has the smallest sales area.
The SPAR logo has the original design format and thus represents the parent brand. It is used in communications describing the retail firm as an organization having several partners. This brand comes after the Express logo in sales area and accommodates products that satisfy consumers’ needs on daily basis.
EUROSPAR logo describes the EUROSPAR Supermarket brand which has a larger sales area than the earlier mentioned store formats. This Supermarket format is designed to cover items and purchases of consumers on weekly basis and thus caters for more needs than the earlier mentioned brands.
INTERSPAR Hypermarket logo represents SPARs biggest store format – the Hypermarket brand. This brand has the largest sales area of more than 3000m2. It was established to meet a wider range of consumer’s needs than all its other store formats. Its purpose is for it to be a one-stop shop for consumers.
Logotype colour specification
An excerpt from the Spars online logo manual says:
“The area outside the symbol and the name style is an integral part of SPAR’s identity and should always remain white.
The logotype is printed in two colours on a white background and it is critical to SPAR’s identity that the colours are interpreted correctly and consistently. The green symbol is (Pantone Matching System) 356 while the red name carrier PMS 185.
Also, the identity should always be printed onto a white background”.
The logo encapsulates the symbol of fir tree which stands for ‘SPAR” in Dutch. The fir is popular for its Christmas tree species. Christmas is a festive season of celebration, shopping and gift unraveling. Hence, the fir Christmas tree symbolizes same. We also know that SPAR is an abbreviated Dutch acronym for DESPAR meaning “All benefit from joint co-operation” and this describes the SPAR concept.
The fir symbol also takes the shape of an arrow head signifying force, direction, movement, power and direction, speed, accelerating growth rates and expansion of SPAR in the retail industry.
The logo has both Red and Green colours. The green colour which is the colour of the fir tree signifies; life, growth of the business, freshness of its food retail products and services. Red has always been an attractive and captivating colour. It represents excitement, passion, energy and has a strong effect on human metabolism and stimulates appetite hence drawing customers to the brand.
Written By Rejoice Emmanuel
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