3 changes to company law in kenya
3 MUST KNOW CHANGES TO COMPANY LAW IN KENYA

Like most institutions in this country and the world over, there are laws set up by the government to ensure legality as well as the promotion and protection of individuals rights in these institutions. These laws also serve to ensure the efficient functioning of these institutions. There are various laws that govern how business is conducted in this country as well as how companies are to conduct their dealings. In this article we’ll look at some of the new laws and amendments to these laws.

  1. BUSINESS REGISTRATION SERVICE ACT

The Business Registration Service Act of 2015 establishes the Business Registration Service as the body in charge of administering laws relating to the incorporation, registration, operation and management of companies, partnerships and firms.

This Act will be responsible for matters relating to business registration. This body will also take over the existing company law functions of the State Law office. The Business Registration Service Act, 2015 will become operational on a date to be set by the Cabinet Secretary by notice in the Kenya Gazette. 

  1. COMPANIES ACT

The Companies Act of 2015 is one of the laws intended to streamline the manner in which business is conducted in Kenya. The intention behind this is that the new provisions will be more flexible, in line with modern business practices and will in turn lead to growth and innovation in various commercial transactions in Kenya. Among the many significant changes, the Act now has provisions that allow companies to have a single shareholder as well as provisions that require a company to have at least one natural director except for in cases where the company’s sole director is a corporation.  

Previously, financial assistance was prohibited except in a limited number of cases. This is no longer the case as companies are now able to buy back their own shares in order to create treasury shares which may then be re-issued. 

  1. INSOLVENCY ACT

To begin with, insolvency occurs when a company is unable to pay its debts. The Insolvency Act of 2015 contains laws relating to matters of insolvency for both individuals and companies which were previously contained in the Bankruptcy Act. The Insolvency Act provides debtors with an alternative to bankruptcy. It creates the legal framework that enables companies to be put into administration which is an alternative to liquidation under the supervision of an insolvency lawyer.

In Kenya, our laws are constantly changing and various amendments are done to ensure that the laws serve the Kenyan people accordingly. It is important to keep up-to-date with these changes.

 Kindly visit http://kenyalaw.org/kl/ to find out more about our laws.

SUSTAINABLE HR PRACTICES

Sustainability refers to the practice of meeting the needs and demands of people today without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs as well. It is the balancing of various social, environmental and economic factors in a manner that is optimal for the preservation of current and future generations. Now more than ever, sustainability is one of the most urgent topical issues in the world.

Owing to the fact that since the Industrial Revolution, most companies/corporations have played a massive role in the degradation of the environment, organisations can no longer afford to ignore this fact. In this article we’ll look at various ways in which companies can become more sustainable especially through their HR departments.

  1. MAKE SUSTAINABILITY A PART OF YOUR COMPANY’S MISSION STATEMENT.

Ensure that sustainability is a key part of your company’s goals. This should also be reflected in your recruitment process in order to ensure that your employees work together towards achieving this common goal. For instance, discuss your sustainability goals during interviews in order to let future employees know what you stand for.

  1. PROVIDE TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES.

Clearly set out the ways in which your company’s sustainability goals are going to impact the society and the environment and let your staff know the roles they can play in achieving these goals. You can speak to your suppliers about sustainable sourcing or find suppliers that are in alignment with your sustainability goals.

  1. PROVIDE VOLUNTEERING OPPORTUNITIES.

Allow your employees to join company volunteer programs. They can also take time off to support charities, and to nominate charities or causes your company can support. You could have an end of year company tradition where you donate to specific charities at the end of the year and have your employees visit these charities.

  1. ADOPT CULTUTAL CHANGE STARTEGIES.

Human Resource departments are charged with handling the affairs of the organisations culture. HR is able to provide data that allows company heads to see how the existing culture aligns with the company’s strategy as well as the progress being made in regard to the implementation of these strategies. A prime example of a sustainable cultural strategy is the training of company heads to properly communicate with their employees’ regarding work-life conflicts. This means providing suitable working conditions and being mindful to the needs of employees such as their health and their relationships with their co-workers.

  1. PROMOTE EMPLOYEE PARTICIPATION.

In a bid to promote sustainability, it is important to give your employees from every level the opportunity to communicate their ideas to their managers. Employee participation creates the conditions for a fruitful social dialogue between the employer and employees. Employee participation increases overall job satisfaction and improves employee loyalty to your company. This in turn means that your company can save up on the costs of recruitment, hiring and training of new employees.

  1. EMPLOYEE DEVELOPMENT.

One of the ways to achieve sustainability as a company is to train and equip your employees with skills that will benefit the future needs of your company. The business environment is constantly evolving and the need for newer skills is constantly arising in companies. In order to promote sustainability within your company consider sustainably developing your employees. This is can be done through the long-term orientation of your employees by equipping them with the necessary skills that will benefit your company’s future needs.  

  1. REVIEW YOUR WORKPLACE PRACTICES.

Review all your processes and work practices to ensure that they are in line with your sustainability goals. Address any areas that are not up to par and develop a code of ethics you would like your company to adhere to. Remember to re-evaluate and adjust your goals in order to keep up with the ever changing societal issues.

Many companies are switching to more sustainable workplace practices in order to keep up with the current global sustainability demands. Implementing a few of these tools is a great way to positively impact your organisation and society as a whole.

https://www.raconteur.net/the-hive/5-ways-hr-drives-culture-change/
CONSULTANTS AND PART-TIME EMPLOYEES
Consultants and Part-time Employees

As companies try to streamline operations and increase their profits, many human resource professionals are now looking at employees in a different light. Aside from trying to find the right candidate for a job, they are looking at ways they can cut costs while still maintaining quality services in order to maximise company profits. The amount of money spent looking for, hiring, paying and training new employees is analysed and used to help determine the companies’ profits and losses.

As businesses look for new avenues to reduce overall costs, human resource management has evolved to include different types of employment, like part-time employees and consultants. Particularly in light of the recent pandemic and the economic decline, trends towards lower cost employment have grown increasingly common.

Part-Time Employees

Part-time employees, also known as casual employees who work thirty-five or fewer hours per week. In addition to working fewer hours, part-time employees don’t usually qualify for benefits such as health insurance or paid vacation.

PROS

To begin with, the benefit of using part-time employees is mainly that the cost per employee for hiring, orientation, and training is less than for full-time workers. This then enables the company to save on these costs and maximise on profits in the long run.

Another benefit of employees that work fewer hours is that employers can be more flexible with scheduling. If a position requires long hours to fill, hiring two part-time people can make scheduling easier than with one full-time employee. It also helps avoid overtime or time and a half, thereby reducing overhead for an employer.

In addition, part-time employees bring diversity to the workplace. This is especially true for workplaces that are maybe looking to increase the number of women professionals. This also has the added benefit of showing your clients and potential customers that you value diversity in your workplace.

CONS

There are few downsides to hiring part-time employees. With part-time employees, there is the risk that they may not be as committed to your company goals and work standards as they are not permanent employees and not feel like they owe your company loyalty.

Hiring part-time workers may lead to inconsistencies in work performance. This is because they may come in and pick-up where on employee left off and the quality of work may differ.

Due to the fact that part-time employees are not around as much or for consistent periods time, they have less contact and interactions with the permanent employees. This may result in full-time employees feeling uncomfortable around pert-time employees.

Consultants

Consultants are hired for a specific positions or tasks and consider the companies they provide their services to, as clients. Consultants are not official company employees. They often have more than one client to which they offer similar services, and are therefore specialists. As consultants aren’t employees, companies don’t have to offer them benefits.

PROS

Hiring consultants saves companies money. Although companies pay consultants more per hour in the long run it actually costs more to hire, train and retain new employees.

Hiring consultants also has a long list of legal benefits, as independent consultants are not protected by the rights available to employees. For instance, consultants do not have the right to unionise. In addition, employees have the right to sue their employers for wrongful termination. Consultants cannot bring these types of suits before the court as they are bound by the terms agreed on in their consultants.

CONS

Independent consultants are difficult to secure due to their scarcity and overly booked schedules. It can take a while to get one booked and it can be difficult to get the same person to do another job for your company. This can then result in inconsistencies in the work done.

Due to the fact that consultants are not employees, they are consultants by numerous companies some of which may be your competitors.

https://social-hire.com/blog/recruitment/5-benefits-of-hiring-part-time-employees

https://www.insperity.com/blog/hiring-part-time-employees/

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/pros-cons-hiring-independent-contractors-30053.html

ADVICE FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
ADVICE FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS

Entrepreneurship comes with a host of challenges. Rewarding challenges, but difficult challenges nonetheless. This is especially true if you’re venturing into an unfamiliar industry or designing the next generation of products. For new entrepreneurs there’s little to no training and sometimes no mentors to guide and support you through the process. This is why it’s so important to gather as much information before you start your new business venture. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. GATHER YOUR TOOLS

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a step; make sure you’re wearing the right shoes. Before starting your business. You should gather as much information about the industry you plan on delving into. How are the thriving businesses structured? How big is the market and who should you target first? What marketing techniques work for the industry?

Speak to other business owners and find out how they operate and what success have they’ve had. Look for the potential and predicted shifts the sector is facing and how your business could respond.

Before you even begin hiring employees, you need to do the job you need them for. This means you’ll be familiar with role and its requirements and can therefore properly recruit for it.  Preserve your cash flow by avoiding unnecessary spending like unqualified employees.

  1. SET SPECIFIC AND REALISTIC GOALs

When starting a business, it is absolutely important that you set specific goals. Goals help you stay on track with your vision and inform all the decisions you make. Setting specific goals enables you to prioritise actions instead of taking random shots in the dark. While it is essential to set goals, it is also vital that you remain realistic about them as well.

In the initial stages of your business, you should set short term goals that are easy to achieve. For instance, having a five-year growth plan that is both specific and realistic will guide your efforts and ensure your actions are focused. Realistic goals are important because they are achievable. Setting unrealistic goals will only serve to demotivate you in the event you don’t achieve them.

  1. BE PATIENT

Rome was not built in a day. When you start your business, you may focus on growth and expansion. This is completely reasonable because this is the point of starting a business in the first place. However, don’t rush yourself remember that any progress, no matter how small is still progress.

In its initial stages, progress may be slow. In the pursuit of growth, you may neglect your focus on improvement. Check your systems and processes, is your business a well-oiled machine? In order for your business to achieve the success you’re working for, all the elements that make it up must be properly maintained. Be patient and persistent and you will begin to see results.

  1. GET THE WORD OUT

Marketing plays a huge role in the success of your business. Now is the time to invest in a content marketing strategy. This will get the word out on your business and draw customers in. Take advantage of social media which has grown to be one of the most powerful marketing tools available. There are many benefits to this marketing strategy such as free traffic and continuous growth as people engage with your content. Keep an eye out for all the new apps and websites that are coming up and use them to your advantage. Your business is only as big as the people who know about it.

  1. KNOW THE LAW

As tedious as it may seem, it is absolutely important that you know the law when starting a business. It is important to know the laws surrounding your industry in order to avoid penalties and legal hurdles. It is also important to ensure that you are in compliance with the legal requirements of running a small business. These include financial regulations, tax obligations and employment laws. Ensure that your new company complies with all its legal responsibilities so you can get back to focusing on growing your business.

“Success is not final; failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”

Winston Churchill

https://www.success.com/11-game-changing-tips-for-small-business-owners/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikekappel/2017/07/12/10-tips-for-starting-a-small-business-that-you-havent-heard-a-thousand-times-already/?sh=7a360d416e19

Saving Money
SAVING MONEY

For most of our lives, we invest a lot of money on acquiring formal education in order to become proficient enough to succeed in our various career paths. Unfortunately, this formal education doesn’t teach us enough on how to handle money. This then results in many hardworking individuals who are stuck in a metaphorical rat race of constant spending and very little to no savings. We can all agree that sometimes, spending money is more exciting than saving it because we want to enjoy the various pleasures of life. However, saving money is the foundation of your financial success and your future self will thank you for it. In this article, we’ll look at some of the ways you can save your money.

1. MANAGE OR ELIMINATE YOUR DEBT[1]

Debt is a particularly daunting subject for anyone who has it. But if managed properly, you can still live a comfortable life and save for a rainy day. Firstly, identify your debt and interest rates and how the principal payments vary with interest. If you have high interest rate loans you need to consider putting as much as you can afford into paying them off. Reducing your owed balance will give you a bigger financial break than what you could’ve saved or earned from investments.

When it comes to fixed-payment loans like a mortgage, decide what period is feasible enough for your debt and how that would impact your savings plan. If you can manage to pay it off in 5 years or less, then consider placing 10-15% of your operating budget in a savings account for a rainy day. If your repayment terms are 5+ years, your monthly payments are likely lower which allows for a bigger operating budget. In this case consider placing 10-20%  of it towards a savings plan or investment portfolio. Otherwise all that stand between you and a financial crisis is a credit card. Debt shouldn’t take away your financial security, with sufficient planning you can have it all.

2. SET AN OPERATING BUDGET[2]

Think of a budget as a monthly spending plan. This will in turn help you to keep track of your spending habits and reduce spending on irrelevant/ non-essential things. When you begin to budget you quickly realise that you’ve been spending loads of money on things like food i.e. eating out and entertainment which can be reduced.

Budgeting doesn’t have to be complicated. All you need to do is write out your bills, bank statements and pay-check amounts and then find out how much you’ve been spending each month compared to how much money you earn. You can then create a budget that includes predictable spending on bills like your rent, groceries etc. the rest of the money can then go into your savings.

3. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF DISCOUNTS AND SALES[3]

Who doesn’t love a good discount or sale? You get to buy things you want at a reduced cost for the same quality and you save some cash. Keep in mind that these can be slippery slope because the low prices may cause you to spend more than you need to buying more things just because the prices are lower. Be sure to only get what you need from discounts and sale and nothing more.

4. REDUCE UTILITY BILLS[4]

 Great way to save money is to reduce your utility bills. You can do this by reducing your electricity usage. Use energy sufficient light bulbs or solar panels to conserve energy and reduce your power bills. You can also conserve power by switching off and unplugging unused electronics around the house. You can also save up on your water bill by turning off taps and using water efficiently to avoid running up the water bill.

5. OPEN A SAVINGS ACCOUNT[5]

A savings account exists for the purpose of enabling you to save a certain amount of money month/ pay period. A saving account is not like a checking account where you can take money out every day or whenever you feel like it. It is there in order for you to save money over a period of time.

Investing in your future should be a priority whatever position you’re in financially. A bird in hand is better than two in the bush.

Also see:

Whether you’re offering a product, service or information, getting the word out about your venture can be quite burdensome. Without the right marketing strategies, your company may have a difficult time staying afloat.

[1] https://www.regions.com/Insights/Personal/Personal-Finances/budgeting-and-saving/10-Best-Ways-to-Save-Money

[2] https://www.thebalance.com/how-to-budget-and-save-money-in-5-easy-steps-4056838

[3] https://www.definefinancial.com/blog/ways-save-money/

[4] https://www.incharge.org/financial-literacy/budgeting-saving/how-to-save-money-on-electric-gas-water-bill/

[5] https://www.thebalance.com/savings-accounts-4073268

Effective Marketing Strategies
EFFECTIVE MARKETING STRATEGIES

Growing a business is not an easy feat. To begin with, you need to have a concrete idea. You’ll then have to find your niche, decide on your target demographic and have a valuable commodity to sell them. Whether you’re offering a product, service or information, getting the word out about your venture can be quite burdensome. Without the right marketing strategies, your company may have a difficult time staying afloat. A marketing strategy refers to the approach a business takes in order to reach its desired customers.[1] It is a highly important component of business growth because it enables businesses to create products and services best suited for specific demographics in order to maximise profit. In this article we’ll look at some of these marketing strategies.

1.DIGITAL MARKETING (SOCIAL MEDIA)[2]

Social media has quickly become one of the defining pillars of the digital age. It therefore goes without saying that this is one of the best resources to use when marketing your business. Many brands have achieved massive success solely due to social media marketing.

Platforms such as Instagram and Twitter can be used to post about your business in order to get the word out. You can also reach out to other successful businesses and even communicate with potential customers. LinkedIn is a social media platform designed specifically to cater to professionals looking to network.

The most important thing when using social media as a marketing tool is authenticity. Post relevant content that you think will be useful to your audience in learning more about you and your business. You can also hire a social media manager to help you manage these accounts.

With all these benefits to social media marketing, it is important to note that there are some challenges involved. For instance, managing social media accounts can be time consuming as consumer engagement increases. Additionally, there is a lot of competition as there are loads of marketers looing to promote their brands on social media. You’ll have to invest time, money and effort in order to keep up with the competition.

2. POSTING BLOG CONTENT[3]

Blog marketing is the process of using blog content to reach your target consumer audience. Today, business owners can easily integrate blogging and marketing to make it for easier management as well convenient visitor access.

WordPress is a blogging platform that has contributed to the massive growth and success of many businesses. In fact, many business owners use the platform for both their blog and website.

The main advantages of this marketing strategy is that it is inexpensive. It is also fairly easy to use and builds traffic to your website due to the fact that people are interested in the new content you offer. As your blog grows in popularity, other brands may reach out to post ads on your website. This can be another source of revenue as well.

3. PUBLIC RELATIONS MARKETING (PR)

This strategy is highly effective in ensuring the success of a business. Most of the big and small brands that are doing so well usually collaborate with influencers i.e. individuals who are popular or well known in society to promote their brands.

It pays, to have someone who has influence in the society tell other people why they love your brand. This form of marketing is especially popular among prominent YouTubers who get paid/ sponsored by businesses to promote their brands to their audiences.

The advantage pf this marketing strategy is that your brand is exposed to a new and wide audience and this therefore generates more customers for your business. Not to mention the fact that it saves on time and resources as well due to the fact that someone else is marketing your brand for you and all you have to do is pay them a sum of money.

4. HOSTING WEBINARS[4]

This is essentially a seminar that takes place online. These are great for marketing because they are especially engaging compared to regular videos. Here, potential customers are able to engage with you directly, in real time. They are able to ask questions about your company and you can administer various presentations and seek feedback as well.

Mshimba Michelle


[1] https://www.investopedia.com/terms/m/marketing-strategy.asp

[2] https://www.lyfemarketing.com/blog/types-of-marketing-strategies/

[3] https://en.ryte.com/wiki/Blog_Marketing

[4] https://buildfire.com/marketing-strategies-for-small-businesses/

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