NOSAK GROUP – pioneering survival strategies for businesses in a recession through Learning and Development

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The current economic variables playing out within the Nigerian business hemisphere have forced organisations to transition in order to survive and still maintain a portion of the market share. This has equally given rise to innovations as regards strategies for survival, which will hopefully mitigate against a future reoccurrence.

The Head Training – Nosak Group; Mrs Igie Odozi stated that this reality not only impacts businesses directly in terms of market share but affects to a larger extend the owners and drivers of the business. The major stakeholders in this endeavour are the owners and the employees. In situations such as the one business owners and organisations have found themselves in this country, the organisations will have to grapple with issues of shrinkage of the market, downsizing, cost savings/reduction in order to remain afloat while employees on their part are up and doing in seeking for greener pastures in other organisations to mitigate the risk of job losses. This to a large extent accounts for the current high level of employee turnover in organisations.

For organisations willing and seeking to remain afloat while running profitably, the key is to imbibe a culture of learning.  Training programmes for human capital development are now channelled towards ensuring the effectiveness of employee contributions to the success of the business. Consequently, smart organisations now adopt more effective solutions in workforce engagement through the retention of their critical talents. This is only achievable by continuous investment in learning and development. Learning and development continues to be a practice that requires a substantial chunk of investment and organizations that fail to adjust their learning management practices and solutions will struggle endlessly with declining organizational growth or productivity.

Nosak Group as a world class company, an innovative cum leading brand in industries is an advocate of this smart solution of investing heavily in continuous learning and development of its workforce using the best of technology and content. A recent study revealed that leading companies like Nosak Gorup are taking it further by leveraging on social learning activities; mobile learning solutions etc thereby consistently increasing the budget size for learning and development. This has equally given rise to a paradigm shift whereby there is a transition from the traditional context of strictly controlling approach of the workforce to the innovative approach of engaging and seeing the workforce as partners in the business.

The traditional methods of learning are also being abandoned in favour of more effective learning solutions based on cutting edge technology, which engages talent and improves performance.

In the present scheme of things, our approach at Nosak Group to organizational development are:

a).     Prioritizing the Individual employee.

b).     Development and Re-training key talent as a strategic business       priority leading to business growth.

c).     Strengthening partnership between the Group and our workforce. This makes us not to be overly “controlling” but one that views her employees as collaborators for success.

It is in line with this paradigm shift by the management of Nosak Group that a World class, fully equipped Training School was commissioned on March 15, 2017 to serve not only the needs of the Group but other organisations willing to key into this initiative. At the flag off of this laudable initiative; Group Chief Operating Officer – Thomas Oloriegbe appreciated the management team for the giant step taken to properly equip the training school with the latest technology offerings. This is geared towards impacting knowledge and empowering the work force in their respective disciplines.

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OIL PALM IS OUR NEW CRUDE OIL – GOV. OBASEKI

Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has revealed that his administration would massively invest in the Oil Palm sector in its quest to diversify the state economy beyond crude oil.

The governor announced this yesterday at the Edo State Government House in Benin when a 14-member committee set up to develop an oil palm plan for the state presented its report to him.

He said: “Oil Palm is our new crude oil; it will be the key driver of our development. The state still has one of the largest estates of oil palm, which have the highest yield in the country. We want to leverage on our high-yielding varieties and long tradition of oil palm production to acquire about 100, 000 hectares of land for the development of oil palm estates. The production will be of global standards and yield”.

Continuing, the governor commended the committee members for their efforts towards gathering the report assuring them that the government would acquire the necessary resources to execute the project.

‘’We will, within the next two weeks, create a smaller team to come up with a work plan on how to execute the feasibility plan, work out the image capturing of the land to be used, and get the involvement of the host community for the project.

Meanwhile, the committee Chairman, Toni Ogunbor, explaining the report, revealed that the committee recommended four key issues in the report that need to be addressed to bring the project to fruition.

These were land development, provision of security, infrastructure and the need to have data on soil and weather conditions.

NOSAK GROUP HOLDS 2017 MANAGEMENT RETREAT

NOSAK GROUP HOLDS MANAGEMENT RETREAT, AIMS TO LEAPFROG IN MARKET LEADERSHIP.

Nosak Group recently held a two-day Management Retreat themed “Accelerate and Win: Leapfrog” at Sunfit Hotels, Amuwo Odofin where over 20 Managers and Department Heads from across Nigeria gathered.
The retreat was facilitated by Wright & Co Ltd, a management consulting firm (Affiliated with Leadership & Vision Ltd) that provides cutting edge solutions to some of the most complex challenges facing organizations today.

Guest speaker, Olu Onakoya, led the retreat with a session on the importance of Effective Communication as a Leader. A Former Managing Director of Mobil Nigeria, Olu Onakoya has over 30 years of cognate corporate and organisational leadership experience, most of which he was at top management level.

Dr. Toni Ogunbor, Chairman of Nosak Group, also conducted a session on the state of the company and trends in Nigerian economy. He applauded each business on its ability to survive in the current economic recession of the country.
Recognising the newest product line of the Group; Nosak Famili Vegetable Oil, a product of one of the newest venture, Nosak Farm Produce Limited. Nosak Famili Vegetable Oil is expected to circulate every Nigerian market before the end of the second quarter of the year, 2017.
This is already creating additional jobs and export opportunities for the country, which the Federal Government has encouraged of recent times. He further stated that, “It was an outstanding retreat and the results will be felt throughout the company for a long time to come. All our team members were able to benefit from the discussions with external facilitators and to participate in the continued aim for leadership of the company.”

An indigenous conglomerate founded in 1984, Nosak Group has built a reputation for providing the highest quality services and products ranging from lubricants, ethanol, retail outlets, real estate, financial services, healthcare solutions, logistics and industrial packaging for clients across Nigeria, as well as neighbouring African Countries.

NOSAK GROUP CHAIRMAN NOMINATED TO LEAD EDO STATE OIL PALM PLANTATION FORUM

Nosak Group Chairman, Dr Tony Ogunbor, was the distinguished Chairman of the Edo State Government Agribusiness Workshop held in Benin-City from 26th to 28th January 2017. Themed ” Harnessing Resources and Opportunities to Optimise Agribusiness in Edo State”. The Workshop was to identify specific areas of government interventions, engage stakeholders and facilitate private sector investments. There was no better choice of whom to open and lead the workshop than our amiable Chairman who for over 26yrs had seen and tapped the opportunities in the Oil Palm sector of the economy. The Governor, Deputy Governor and other eminent stakeholders in business, academia and government were fully represented.

In his welcome and opening address, Dr Ogunbor took the participants on a roller coaster ride of his rich experience in the Agric sector spanning the challenges and successes. He reminded the participants of the value of Agriculture in the country in the 50’s and 60’s before the advent of Crude Oil and how in spite of our fertile lands we have been caught in the dangerous web of the black gold. He enumerated the gains in Agriculture and the value chain opportunities therein. He further highlighted the numerous benefits accruable from retracing back to the agrarian culture and commended the State government in its quest to make Edo State the number one state in Agriculture.

Breakout sessions were held in which the Nosak team participated fully in the Oil Palm/Cocoa/Rubber Group. The Nosak Team was ably represented by Mr Robert Ogirri, MD of Nosak Farm Produce Ltd and Mr Victor Egharevba, Plantation Manager of Saturn Farms.

The Chairman was further nominated by the State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, during the one on one session on Saturday to lead and chair the Oil Palm Plantation Forum and present the way forward for Edo State.

To read more on this, kindly click the link below: https://www.google.com/amp/nigerianobservernews.com/2017/01/agribusiness-workshop-opens-in-benin-city/amp/

Recession? Time to strengthen your company

Who’s got time to worry about building a stronger organisation in a downturn? Surely executives can’t focus on internal issues when they face so many other pressing matters?

But this is exactly the time when leaders need to ensure their organisations are performing well, so that important decisions get made and executed quickly and effectively.

Turbulence offers a rare chance to bring in new talent and improve the way that organisations function.

The trouble is that companies under duress often lack the organisational capabilities to meet mounting challenges. Some make snap decisions. Others stall, unable to decide. Yet others badly need new people to bring fresh perspectives or help them overhaul dysfunctional cultures.

Strengthening the organisation is one of the most powerful levers any company can pull to improve its performance in a downturn. It starts by asking a series of questions:

  1. What are the critical decisions in this downturn?
  2. Do we need to adjust our organisational structure to address them effectively?
  3. How should our roles and processes change?
  4. Will our most experienced people be able to make and execute key decisions?
  5. Which aspects of our culture reinforce decision effectiveness, and which don’t?

Adopting this “decision lens” is the single most important step that a company can take to improve its performance.

It helps leaders focus their efforts where they will have the most impact during a downturn and accelerate growth when the economy improves.

1) Identifying the critical decisions

Every company has its critical decisions. If your business is in relatively good shape, those decisions may not have changed much. Some will be the big choices, like whether to acquire a competitor or invest in a new product. Others may be everyday frontline decisions.

Toyota, for example, achieved its leading position partly through its reputation for manufacturing quality. To maintain that quality, the carmaker ensures that workers in every plant know how to make and execute the right quality-related decisions.

These decisions are as important now as when Toyota was growing rapidly.

If you are in survival mode, your critical decisions will be different, such as whether to sell a stake or overhaul the business model.

2) Testing the structure

Sometimes structure is a serious obstacle to making and executing a business’ critical decisions.

In that case, structure must change.

Previously, Hewlett-Packard’s sales force was organised by customers while its manufacturing units were organised by products. With stalled decisions and people working at cross purposes, performance suffered.

The IT firm then moved to a product-based structure across the entire company, with accountabilities for decisions clearly defined. That created the conditions for better decision-making and execution, which in turn generated higher profits.

3) Clarifying roles and processes

Whatever a company’s structure, decision roles need to be clear. Unless people know who is responsible for making and executing critical decisions, stress on an organisation will only increase.

The individual or team responsible for a Recommendation gathers relevant information and proposes a course of action.

  • People with Input responsibilities help shape a recommendation so it is operationally practical and financially feasible.
  • An executive who must Agree is anyone who needs to sign off, often a legal or regulatory compliance officer.
  • Eventually, one person will Decide. Assigning the “D” to one individual ensures single-point accountability.
  • The final role in the process involves the people who will Perform or execute the decision.

Clear decision roles are essential amid turbulence. They can boost performance by unclogging bottlenecks and cutting the organisation’s cycle time.

4) Right people in right roles

In good times, companies focus on managing growing organisations. In a recession, the logic changes. Many companies cut costs through layoffs and attrition.

But the people who leave are not always the poorest performers. Those who stay may not have the skills to make and execute decisions. And companies often fail to consider who they might hire to bolster their capabilities.

In a downturn, no company can afford to have the wrong people in key decision roles.

At one IT company, we found that more than 40% of the managers identified as high performers were in non-critical positions. Meanwhile, fewer than 40% in mission-critical roles were top performers. The senior team quickly corrected the mismatch, and business performance immediately improved.

The key to making the best use of people is a robust, effective, performance-management system that has real consequences.

5) Actively managing the culture

Culture underpins an organisation’s decisions. But cultures change and are particularly susceptible to change when an organisation is in crisis.

In a downturn, leaders need to take action to keep a strong culture from deteriorating – or to transform a culture that hinders good decisions.

Understanding that its culture is a competitive advantage, Southwest Airlines reinforces it in hard times.

In the early stages of the current recession, it maintained staff loyalty (through no involuntary job cuts) and invested in upgrading customer service. The carrier continues to be one of the US leaders for on-time performance, an aspect of the business that customers care deeply about.

A strong organisation is not optional, something to worry about after the crisis. Your organisation’s strength will greatly affect how well your company weathers the storm.

It will also strongly improve your chances for growth once the storm passes.

4 STEPS TO GROWTH DURING A RECESSION

Can companies actually grow stronger during a recession? What can they do to capitalize on the problems that their rivals encounter during tough economic times? Suppose you have a sturdy balance sheet, low debt, and plentiful amounts of cash. How can you employ these strengths to take on rivals who have been weakened considerably?

Reminded of the importance of considering these questions in Steve Jobs’ recent quotes about Apple’s strategy in the days and months ahead. Jobs promises to expand the firm’s research and development efforts this year, even if economic growth does turn negative. Here is what he told Fortune magazine a few weeks ago, reflecting on the last recession as well as the current economic climate: “In fact we were going to up our R&D budget so that we would be ahead of our competitors when the downturn was over. And that’s exactly what we did. And it worked. And that’s exactly what we’ll do this time.” Of course, Apple sits in an enviable position. They have an impressive balance sheet, mountains of cash, and no debt. If your firm also finds itself in such a position of strength, remember that it too can use the recession to become even stronger relative to the competition.

Here are four steps your company should consider now:

  1. Invest heavily in research and development now so that new products and services are ready for launch as the economy begins to grow again. Your competitors may be inclined to cut R&D, particularly if they face high interest payments, substantial drops in revenue, and the like. If so, your acceleration of investment now will yield a strong product advantage in the coming years.

 

  1. Spend some time learning about the customers of your weakest competitors. You might be inclined to go after their largest and most attractive clients. However, be aware that your rivals are probably working desperately to save those customers. They might not, however, have the time and resources to focus on smaller clients. Focus your attention on these potential new customers, particularly those with attractive growth prospects and strong balance sheets.

 

  1. Identify your most critical suppliers and distributors, and determine if any face the possibility of severe impairment to their business due to the economic downturn. Assess the risk to your business if they should falter badly or even fail completely. Then, examine ways in which you might help those supplies and distributors weather the downturn. Even the smallest gesture can sometimes build an enduring loyalty that will pay off for years to come.

 

  1. Think carefully about your talent needs. As weak companies lay off employees, many good people will find themselves searching for work. Other skilled workers may still have a job, but they may be disenchanted with their struggling firms. Capitalize on this opportunity to identify and attract talented employees, while slack exists in the labour market.