role of research problem in choosing an appropriate methodology. It also presents the research questions, methodology, and design that can be used by the researcher to analyze the research problem and proceed with his research study. The third section of the paper identifies two major qualities of team leaders that contribute to successful leadership and explains strategies that organization leaders can implement to develop these two qualities in their team leaders in order to achieve maximum performance. The paper also explains some advantages and disadvantages of these leadership skills or qualities.
Vietnam -- The Economy, Marketing Landscape, and Brand Perception of Consumers
Economic System and Macro-Economic Environment of Vietnam and its Response to Globalization:
After the recent financial crisis hit the world markets, Vietnamese economy revived itself and became a market-oriented economy (Vietnam Centre for Economic and Policy Research, 2010). All its manufacturing, industrial, and trade sectors have seen tremendous growth during the last few years (CIA Fact Book, 2013). The Government invested huge amount on global trade in order to attract investors from all the corners of the world (Heritage, 2013). Anticipating potential opportunities in the Vietnamese markets, a large number of international brands from all types of sectors entered the country and established their strong presence. These international brands are now giving hard competition to the local Vietnamese brands and have become market leaders in different sectors; like foods, fashion, technology, etc.
The rate of inflation is quite high (18.7%) in Vietnam which is putting hurdles in the way of local brands to compete profitably with the global brands which are financially well-off (Heritage, 2013). Due to this high rate of inflation, the local brands have to shrink their profit margins in order to attract consumers through competitive pricing strategies and promotional offers. At the same time, these local brands have to focus on the quality and features of their products in a view to compete with the global brands which are technologically and operationally much better and advanced. These efforts of the local brands significantly increase their costs of operations which further make the competitive environment stringent for them.
The Vietnamese economy has been showing positive growth rate during the last few years. It has observed significant improvements in the real GDP growth rate, industrial contribution to GDP, exports earnings, reserves of foreign exchange and gold (CIA Fact Book, 2013). However, the rate of unemployment has increased as compared to the previous year which is not a good sign for the economy (Vietnam Centre for Economic and Policy Research, 2010). As far as industrial growth is concerned, the Vietnamese government is strongly focusing on economic modernization of the country. Vietnam became the member of World Trade Organization in 2007 which made it more attractive for the foreign direct investors to invest in this growing economy (Heritage, 2013).
Politically, Vietnam is a Communist state. The overall behavior of the local government is quite positive towards foreign investors. The economic conditions are turning in favor of manufacturing corporations. However, the competitive environment is becoming stiffer and more challenging for these local manufacturers due to the entry of a large number of foreign brands in all types of industries. The social, cultural, and demographical patterns in the country vary from area to area. There are high income groups in large cities of the country whereas rural areas are more popular for agricultural contribution to the economy (CIA Fact Book, 2013).
c. Marketing Landscape:
The Vietnamese economy - consisting of an 89.3 million population has become a potential market for global brands. The GDP growth rate of the country is 5.9% which is also a positive sign for the foreign direct investors. Therefore, they use extensive advertising and promotional campaigns to attract customers to buy their products and prefer them over their local brands. These brands are making every effort to snatch the largest portion of market share from the local Vietnamese brands and become more competitive in operational and financial terms.
The global brands are becoming more and more powerful in terms of financial performance, operational efficiency, manufacturing capabilities, and global business network. Therefore, it is easier for them to establish their presence in any new target country as compared to local small scale brands. In Vietnamese market, the operational strength and a well-established brand image of the global brands largely help them in attracting quality-seeking customers. On the other hand, local brands are less competitive in terms of operational efficiency and manufacturing capabilities which become major hurdles when they intend to target the same category of customers.
All the local and international brands make an extensive use of different advertising and promotional mediums to create awareness about their new products and promote the existing products with various discount offers (Atchariyachanvanich & Okada, 2007). In addition to the price comparison, these brands emphasize on the quality and features of their products in order to persuade customers to prefer their brands over all other brands. The major marketing mediums used by Vietnamese and global firms include electronic media (television and radio), print media (newspapers, magazines, company publications, etc.), in-store displays, social media networking sites, and the firms' own websites. The most expensive mediums are television and newspapers due to their extensive reach to a large target population in the country.
d. Brand Perception of Local and Foreign Brands:
The "Theory of Buyer Behavior" presented by Howard & Sheth (1969) states that brand perception is based on a number of factors which ultimately impacts the customer's buying behavior towards that brand. These factors include quality, price, features, and convenient availability of that brand. Rook & Fisher (1995) believe that brand perception by the customers is largely dominated by some psychological factors; such as brand loyalty, needs, environment, etc. The customers prefer only those brands which can satisfy these psychological needs. In case of competition between local and global brands in Vietnamese market, the research study by Li, Kuo, & Rusell (1999) can be applied. They believe that consumer behavior and brand perceptions are largely affected by the social, demographical, and cultural factors.
The foreign brands that enter Vietnamese market strongly emphasize on creating awareness about their products among supply chain members and end-users. They use trade shows, advertising, promotional events, product seminars, and point-of-sale promotions to attract customers. These efforts require heavy portion from the marketing budget which cannot be borne by small local manufacturers in Vietnam (Vietnam Centre for Economic and Policy Research, 2010). Therefore, they cannot run these types of campaigns to mold the brand perception and consumer behavior of the target market in favor of their products (Shoham & Brencic, 2003).
Part A: Qualitative and Quantitative Research
1. Qualitative Research
The biggest advantage of qualitative research is that it gives a broader picture of the area to be studied. If a researcher is confused or unsure about the area which he has to focus during his research, he can think in many dimensions and reach a specific area using qualitative research methods (Ghauri & Gronhaug, 2005). Therefore, the researcher does not have to formulate a definite research design in order to begin his research (Cooper & Schindler, 2013).
Qualitative research also allows the researcher to collect huge data in the form of written material, discussions, photographs, audios, videos, etc. (Sandelowski & Barroso, 2007). This comprehensive collection of data is useful when the researcher has to analyze the opinion and thinking patterns of individuals (Saunders, Lewis, & Thornhill, 2009). In this way, qualitative research gives more effective results in social and management sciences. Moreover, a researcher, moderator, or interviewer gets more detailed responses from his respondents in the qualitative research due to unstructured and open-ended questions (Rubin & Babbie, 2011).
One of the major challenges in qualitative research is find out the grounded theory on which the researcher has to base his overall research study. The research methodology and design is more difficult to develop in a qualitative research as compared to quantitative research (Rubin & Babbie, 2011). The researcher-participant relationship also impacts the outcomes of a qualitative research study due to the possibility of high level of biasness in responses. In some cases, respondents hesitate to express their opinions due to confidentiality and personal security reasons (Sandelowski & Barroso, 2007). Moreover, a qualitative research is more exposed to procedural issues due to the researcher's excessive use of subjective evaluation instead of numerical data. Although a qualitative research is less expensive; but it is more labor-intensive and time-consuming than a quantitative research (Saunders, Lewis, & Thornhill, 2009).
2. Quantitative Research
In contrast to qualitative research, the quantitative research gives more accurate and reliable data to the researcher. In this type of research, the researcher can summarize, classify, and analyze the collected data in a well-organized and systematic way. For example, he can use different data analytical, mathematical, and statistical tools and use tables and graphs to present his data in a more concise fashion (Ghauri & Gronhaug, 2005). The data in a…