Identifying short-medium term measures for improving the strategic alignment and business performance of Practical Action Southern Africa: A case for International NGOs in Zimbabwe: 2009 - 2014
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This study was conducted to explore and recommend the short-term and medium-term measures for improving the overall performance of Practical Action Southern Africa(PASA). The research proposition was that PASA was failing to achieve its strategic objectives due to misalignment among its strategy, structure, systems, leadership style, shared values, staff relations and skills management. Data was collected through a semi-structured questionnaire survey on directors of four similar International non-governmental organisations (INGOs). A structured Likert scale questionnaire survey was also conducted on the employees of the same INGOs. Qualitative data was subjected to content analysis while quantitative data was analysed using the Pearson’s Chi-Square tests on SPSS in order to understand the relationship of views between directors and employees about their respective organisations. The McKinsey’s 7S model was applied to evaluate the extent of strategic alignment of PASA. Limited availability of donor funding was found to be the most critical external factor that was negatively affecting the attainment of the strategic objectives of PASA. The internal factors which needed urgent attention by the PASA management were the operational systems, the organisational structure, operationalisation of organisational values, skills development and management, and staff relations.PASA is also advised to develop and incorporate process indicators in its performance monitoring and management system. This research concluded that PASA management could gain a competitive edge over its competitors by reviewing and improving their systems, structure, leadership style, employee skills development, innovative capabilities as well embedding the organisation’s values into their culture of doing business. The researcher suggested that future research should focus on the operations and contributions of the different types of INGOs in specific geographical and socio-economic settings, as well as measurement of their impact on communities. Further research is also needed to understand how INGOs try to attain competitive advantage in their line of business, including an analysis of partnership models.