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Why culture and strategy matter for small businesses

Why culture and strategy matter for small businesses

Culture is the ideas, customs and behaviour of a particular group of people or society. Within an organisation, culture defines how people behave within the organisation and enables its ability to implement strategy. While the two are interrelated, there is ongoing debate among business experts over which one is more important than the other.
In the next instalment of a series of webinars on what SMEs need to focus on to become sustainable companies, experienced businessman and industry veteran Leon Viljoen will on Tuesday share his insights into why one is as important as the other.

The webinars, hosted by Mr Viljoen in partnership with the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa’s (SEIFSA’s) Small Business Hub, are aimed at providing support, guidance and advice to help SMEs to run successful and sustainable businesses.

Mr Viljoen said that in order to be successful, businesses need to understand the importance of developing and implementing a strategy that everyone in the business understands.

“Many companies, especially the smaller ones, ignore this basic principle when things are going well, only to get bitten when they face headwinds during downturns
such as the current one occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic. Having the correct strategy that everyone in the business buys into is the foundation of every successful company,” he said.

However, he said the key is to ensure that the strategy can be converted into actionable steps or key performance indicators. “Without this, a strategy is meaningless,” he said.
Mr Viljoen said it was important for SMEs to appreciate that culture links into strategy by defining how that strategy is implemented. Important aspects of culture include how customers are handled in a business’s day-to-day operations.

“Excellent customer service can be a differentiator in any industry and is a culture that needs to be lived and driven from the top. During the next webinar, I will explore this topic, explaining why businesses need to regard culture and strategy as one of the key pillars of running a successful business,” he said.
The webinar will take place on Tuesday, 6 October at 10am. For more information or to register, please visit www.seifsa.co.za.