Cost Leadership Strategies in the Global World
Cost leadership refers to the utilization of the company’s competitive position by relying on achieving lower costs of production in comparison with its major competitors. Cost-leadership strategies have become more paramount nowadays as multinational corporations strive to expand their operations in developing countries where consumers are extremely price-sensitive. Cost leadership strategies include reducing the prices below the competitors’ level or establishing the prices equal to those of rivals and maximizing the company’s rate of income.
Research question: What are the major factors that determine the optimal cost leadership strategy for modern companies?
As this topic is very broad, it is reasonable to examine it in the following way. Firstly, the literature review should be provided. It is necessary to analyze the latest theoretical contributions to the cost leadership theory. For example, Lepadatu (2015) specifies different types of costs, including explicit and implicit. Douglas (2013) applies the general theory to examining the dynamics of specific industries. Duica & Duica (2014) formulate major organizational implications derived from the consistent implementation of cost leadership into the organizational process. Banker, Mashurwala & Tripathy (2014) compare the effectiveness of the cost leadership strategy with the differentiation approach. They specify the factors that may lead to preferring one theory over another.
Moreover, Hilman & Kaliappen (2014) elaborate on the relationships between the cost leadership strategy and process innovations. Nogalski & Niewiadomski (2013) examine the use and transition of knowledge during the implementation of cost leadership. Plonien & Donovan (2015) explain how cost leadership can be integrated into the general product evaluation process.
As a result, the following hypothesis can be formulated. It may be expected that the significance of cost leadership will tend to increase in the modern business world, especially in developing markets.
It is reasonable to use several methods to arrive at the objective conclusions in this study. Firstly, it is possible to examine the available statistical information about cost leadership strategies used by multinational corporations and other companies in the 21st century and compare them to those used in the 20th century. It is also possible to assess the role of cost leadership in the overall organizational strategy. However, it seems that relying exclusively on the secondary sources of information is insufficient for understanding the role of cost leadership at the micro-level. For this reason, survey methodology is quintessential for the evaluation of responses provided by the managers of various companies.
The corresponding questionnaires will allow to specify the role of cost leadership in the company’s current operations. It is also necessary to determine which form of cost leadership is used by a specific company. In particular, it may be established whether it tries to reduce its prices to maximize its market expansion, or to maximize its rate of profit. It is also reasonable to clarify whether the managers’ use of cost leadership in their business performance is successful or not. It is possible to utilize the scale from 1 to 5 to specify the perceived effectiveness of the strategy. Then, the obtained data should be systematized and interpreted. It can allow to gain a better understanding of the companies’ strategies regarding to the implementation of cost leadership in their operations.
Visionary leaders: Implications for the 21st century
Although visionary leaders are very rare, they have a profound impact on their organizations and the society in general. They inspire people to achieve the victories which seem impossible under traditional managerial styles. It is reasonable to examine the topics related to visionary leaders in the context of current trends and potential implications for the 21st century.
Which organizational sphere should be central for visionary leaders in the 21st century?
First of all, it is necessary to conduct the literature review and specify major theoretical approaches to this topic. Painter-Morland & Deslandes (2014) rethink the traditional notion of leadership in the context of gender-related issues. Du & Choi (2013) try to assess the efficiency of current authority in China by paying attention paid to the visionary style of leadership. They believe that visionary commanders can increase the overall effectiveness of managerial practices in developing countries. Sliwa et al. (2013) elaborate on the essence of sacrifice in the leaders’ decisions and choices.
Mazumdar-Shaw (2013) claims that the social conscience should be incorporated in leaders’ decisions to generate the best outcomes. Hamstra et al. (2014) specify the major factors that influence the effectiveness of transformational and transactional leadership. Oborn, Barrett & Dawson (2013) consider various alternatives for distributing leadership functions among the existing sociomaterial practices. Zehir et al. (2014) elaborate on ethical considerations that should be considered while implementing the major principles of visionary and charismatic leadership.
The following hypothesis may be presented. It is expected that the role of visionary leadership will increase especially in relation to the most dynamic spheres, such as th0065 IT industry.
It is reasonable to rely on qualitative methodology while organizing this study. As a matter of fact, quantitative methods are inapplicable in the context of visionary leaders’ influence on their organizations and the entire industries. It is necessary to examine the sources that represent the major characteristics of visionary leaders as well as provide concrete examples of such managers in the United States. As a result, it will be possible to project the impact of visionary leaders on the development of the modern national economy as well as the structure of key contemporary industries.
It is also possible to use the survey methodology to examine the experience of modern managers and assess their potential benefits in corresponding spheres. Only well-developed questionnaires can be used. Firstly, it is necessary to specify whether respondents have had any previous experience of interacting with visionary leaders. Secondly, it is advisable to clarify the expectations of visionary commanders in the particular spheres. Finally, they should be inquired about the major potential benefits they expect to experience from the presence of visionary leaders. Then, their answers might be examined. The information about visionary leadership from secondary sources should be compared into the existing managers’ expectations and perceptions.
Team leadership in the competitive environment
The modern global world is characterized by the growing number of teams of different sizes and specializations. The ultimate effectiveness of these teams largely depends on the authoritative potential demonstrated by their leaders. Moreover, inner team administration experiences have substantial influence on the external competitive environment.
Research question: How can team leaders address the existing market uncertainty caused by the existence of industry competitors?
It is necessary to provide the literature review of the major theoretical approaches in this sphere. Schwarz (2014) proposes a framework for analyzing the success of the organizational performance. He introduces the concept of “mutual learning”. Heldal & Antonsen (2014) examine additional requirements for team leaders posed by the high-risk environment. They stress that the correct appraisement of contextual factors may allow to reduce the general risk level. Sommer, Howell & Hadley (2015) suggest that effective team leadership creates a long-term advantage for a company during organizational crisis.
Hedlund & Osterberg (2013) evaluate the process of team leadership through team learning and psychology. Potent authority allows to utilize the potential of all organizational members without any exceptions. Song, Park & Kang (2015) emphasize that the proper knowledge-sharing climate is crucial for improving the cooperation between leaders and followers. Chi & Huang (2014) examine available mechanisms in the contexts of transformational leadership and team performance. Effective organizations should be able to organize their scarce resources in accordance with their goals.
The following hypothesis seems to be relevant. The role of team leadership will continue to increase in the future, and companies will have to spend more of resources to develop team leadership skills among their members.
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It is reasonable to use the qualitative methodology while organizing this study. The reason is that the effectiveness of team leadership affects all spheres of organizational performance. Thus, all direct and indirect interrelationships cannot be identified only with the help of quantitative methods. It is possible to use secondary sources for reviewing the current trends in team building and the factors that are usually considered crucial for the companies’ productivity and gains from team leadership.
In addition, it is possible to organize the methodological survey in order to specify the attitude of managers to team leadership in their organizations and their assessments of its effectiveness. The questionnaires should be constructed in a way that clarifies the major team management practices present in a given organization. It is necessary to compare the efficaciousness of different methods of command. It is reasonable to specify whether the spreading of team leadership practices is sufficient for addressing the existing needs. Finally, it is possible to inquire about the specific steps that can be taken to promote team leadership. The generalizations acquired from this analysis should be made on the basis of the answers obtained from respondents and corresponding recommendations.