Eunice Wambui Mwangi, Kepha Ombui
Abstract: The current operational set-up in Kenyas health sector is a turbulent one and highly competitive market condition. To ensure survival and sustainability in the market place, the mission hospitals require adopting a competitive strategy. Markets may be liberalized or controlled and at various stages of development depending on the country. Mission hospitals following competitive strategies may realize a performance advantage over competitors that pursue other generic strategy type or those that are stuck-in-the-middle. These competitive strategies include marketing portfolios with adequate human and capital resources, social responsibility activities, brand images, convenience retailing, market share position and length of time in the industry. The general objective of this study was to establish the effects of competitive strategies on the performance of mission hospitals in Kenya. The objectives of the study were to establish the effects of cost leadership, differentiation, market focus and corporate growth and development strategies on the performance of the mission hospitals in Kenya. This study adopted a descriptive survey design. The population for the study was 132 managers at Kijabe Mission Hospital. For this study, a sample of 45 % (59 respondents) was taken using stratified random sampling. For the purpose of collecting data on the effects of application of competitive strategies on the performance of mission hospitals primary data (information gathered directly from respondents) was collected using questionnaires. On the other hand secondary data was collected from newspapers, published books, journals and magazines as well as other sources such as annual reports. The data was analyzed using descriptive statistics such as frequency, percentages, and measure of central tendency. In addition, multiple regression analysis was conducted to establish the relationship between the competitive strategies and performance. Factor analysis was also be used to test the factors variability. The study concludes that cost leadership had the greatest effect on the performance of the mission hospitals, followed by product/market development strategies, then market focus while differentiation had the least effect on the performance of the mission hospitals. The study recommends that firms using the differentiation should concentrate on investing in and developing such things that are distinguishable and customers will perceive.
Keywords: Cost leadership, Differentiation, Market focus, Performance, Corporate growth, Competitive strategies