Original Research

An operational excellence strategy implementation model for growth in a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environment

Emmanuel Jengwa, Rene Pellissier
Acta Commercii | Vol 22, No 1 | a960 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ac.v22i1.960 | © 2022 Emmanuel Jengwa, Rene Pellissier | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 21 May 2021 | Published: 10 June 2022

About the author(s)

Emmanuel Jengwa, Private, Durban, South Africa
Rene Pellissier, Cape Higher Education Consortium, Cape Town, South Africa


Orientation: The study has been undertaken to design an Operational Excellence (OE) Strategy Implementation Model for Growth in a VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous) Environment. The study was conducted using Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) listed companies.

Research purpose: To develop an OE strategy implementation model for organisational growth in a VUCA environment.

Motivation of study: Illuminating problems such as the prevailing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic are impeding OE strategy implementation by JSE listed organisations, suggesting the fact that existing models do not address changes in VUCA environments.

Research design, approach and method: This research collected quantitative data using the questionnaire instrument rolled out through SurveyMonkey to 1000 people working for JSE listed companies implementing Operational Excellence. The data collected from the 430 responses of the sampled 1000 was acceptable according to Krejcie and Morgan (1970) formula which requires 384 as minimum for generalisation. The data was cleaned for analysis using the Stata SE version 15.1 where all variables were transformed into numerical score on the Likert scale. The linear regression of the variables enabled the linkages that resulted in structural relationships. The structural equation modelling (SEM) technique was used to further analyse the structural relationships observed, these relationships enabled the construction of the final model through path analysis.

Main findings: The study found that OE strategy can only drive growth through proper implementation, maintenance, and improvements utilising management review of best practices, policies, and procedures on key performance metrics such as revenue, profits and return on investment.

Practical/managerial implications: Shortcomings of the existing models were interrogated and gaps found in order to design a more suitable model for growth which takes cognisance of the VUCA Environment.

Contribution/value-add: A new model was designed that can be used successfully as a holistic tool in OE to drive growth by practitioners of the industry.


design; operational excellence; strategy implementation; financial growth; VUCA environment


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