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Distinct vs Core Competences

  Mar 30, 2012

Dr. Jonathan Ciano – CEO, Uchumi Supermarkets presented to the MBA year 1 class his story of turning around Uchumi Supermarkets during a session where his presentation yielded more on the power of teams, people and partnerships, more than the comparative figures before and after the receivership period. The Uchumi receivership period saw this once lucrative supermarket, close up many branches and even at some point, when Dr. Ciano managed to finally get some funding from one of our major banks, did not even have liquid cash to dispense to the tellers for transactions.

He spoke of veering from creating groups of people to creating teams, which understand each others’ strengths and weaknesses and appreciate that there is a common goal for all to achieve, for the realization of the individual benefits. Dr. Ciano gave examples of companies that have in the recent past, been listed for restructuring owing to different problems unique to each of his list of companies saying that sometimes, the downfall of companies is usually caused by internal problems – especially Management and also not knowing what their core business is. “We never chase anyone…we look after our customers” said Dr. Ciano as he brought in the aspect of distinct versus core competencies. He said that, ‘all people can smile but not all can give a distinctive impressionable smile”. Your distinct competencies are what will sustain you amidst environmental turmoil.

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