Coalescence around the Zimbabwe brand | The Sunday Mail

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The Sunday Mail

Editor’s Brief
Victoria Ruzvidzo

Psychologists are unanimous in saying that perception is reality. Basically, the way something is perceived informs or guides the reaction to it.

So, for example, it is clearly affirmed in the legal profession that justice must not only be done, but must be perceived as such.

The Zimbabwe brand came under sustained attack from the turn of the century and has survived to this day.

Undoubtedly, the agrarian reform precipitated the deluge of attacks.

This country was painted black mainly to seek social justice.

It has been made to pay by the harmful sanctions that we have had to endure as a nation.

But you have to turn the lemon into lemonade.

Many there now know so much about this country.

A taxi driver in Tokyo, Japan knows a lot about “Jimbabwe” from the publicity that the “stubbornness” (read assertiveness) of that country has attracted.

We can take advantage of this through this Brand Zimbabwe project.

It’s up to us to tell our story and create a brand the world can’t resist.

We now live in an increasingly competitive global village where there is a rush for markets, suppliers, partners and financiers.

The countries that stand out will reap optimal benefits and scale the intended heights.

A country’s brand must be strong and well positioned, which in itself is a distinctive advantage.

Indeed, the world is cooperative, but competitive at the same time.

We therefore welcome the launch of the Brand Zimbabwe project by the Honorable Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Senator Monica Mutsvangwa last Monday.

The corporate world emphasizes branding and the reasons are easy to discern.

Almost all have separate brand management divisions whose mandate is to ensure that the brand builds, enters the market, consolidates, is sustainable, continuously improved and shines.

A brand is the first level of contact with stakeholders and, as they say, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression!

Without exception, stellar global companies have fabulous brands anchoring their operations.

Think Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, Coca-Cola, Nike, Mercedes-Benz, etc.

Brands drive entities, and so do countries.

“We are launching this initiative with the belief that in the end the country will have a brand that represents the identity, character and aspirations of the people of Zimbabwe, and that this exercise will galvanize us and help us focus on what we are meant to do together – to restore the greatness of our nation again, regardless of our political beliefs, religious beliefs, race, gender or class,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.

This captures the essence and the dire need of the Brand Zimbabwe project.

It is up to us to unite around this judicious and prudent project.

The Zimbabwe brand transcends political affiliation.

It doesn’t matter what political party you belong to.

It is a national cause which sharpens our nationalist feelings. It questions our sense of patriotism.

Likewise, it puts our unit level under scrutiny. I pray that we come out of this with flying colors.

The propensity to view all government initiatives, interventions, programs and policies according to political affiliations in certain pockets of the population is self-defeating, myopic and retrograde. It is up to each of us to reach a level of maturity and balance, without bias.

President Mnangagwa delivered the keynote speech at the annual Zimbabwe Investment Forum which was attended by policymakers, parastatals, insurance companies, development finance institutions, financial service providers and individuals.

His speech set the tone of the forum.

“This forum is therefore crucial and timely as it interrogates various ways to increase long-term sustainable financing.”

What was particularly noteworthy was that the president openly asked the private sector to talk about government shortcomings.

The President has shown wise leadership and a strong desire to work collectively.

The Government has repeatedly urged all actors to contribute to the building of this country, including the media.

Responsible reporting, factual and balanced reporting, ethical conduct, truthful, informative and analytical articles should punctuate the media landscape, unless there is sensationalism.

It’s okay to have differing points of view.

In fact, there is unity in diversity.

Diverse opinions, perspectives and ideas can be integrated and synchronized into more robust, viable, dynamic and sustainable solutions.

Thus in the spheres of business, politics and science, there is thesis, antithesis and synthesis!

Indeed, member business organizations should be an active building block in building the Zimbabwe brand and displaying the kind of disposition it needs.

Some are guilty of grandstanding while others are guilty of inertia over certain blatant indiscretions and sometimes downright illegal behaviors and practices, delaying our progress in the process.

Globally, the private sector is the engine of growth while the fiduciary roles of governments include formulating the required policies, providing an operating environment conducive to business and ensuring the availability of social support.

The link is inextricable.

The onerous task of building a brand is not limited to government, business and workers, but extends and involves everyone.

I was listening to a show a few weeks ago. The guest was India’s Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Mr. Vijay Khanduja.

When asked what the designation of ambassador entails, he eloquently explained that every citizen is an ambassador of his country, because the conceptions, impressions and interest in any country arise from interactions at all levels, whatever the designation or position in life and in our different spheres.

It can be said that there are three types of innovation, namely sustaining, empowering and efficient, as Professor Clayton of Harvard Business School proposes.

He argued that sustainable innovations aim to manufacture products and provide services with the aim of retaining customers, markets and investments.

They add nothing to job creation, poverty eradication or economic growth.

Efficiency innovations reduce production or service costs. It is the empowerment of innovations that our brand should encapsulate in projections as well as in practice.

New industries and ecosystems arise from this.

Communication in this case is essential. How the brand message is communicated is very important.

The values ​​and morals of the brand must be conveyed with dynamism and success. He must instill allegiance.

Human capital should be a primary consideration. The reasons are many, including that we are the most important resource; even more, as artisans, recipients and targets of any brand strategy.

Countries can harness the full potential of technology only if, and only if, their human capital understands it.

These are the people who have an impact and who are impacted by branding strategies.

What technology does is enable us humans to generate new ideas by working in innovative ways and with new partners. Clearly, technology is primarily, if not exclusively, designed to elevate human endeavors and serve human purposes.

The Brand Zimbabwe project calls for decisive, deliberate and distinctive support.

It is a vehicle through which our collective aspirations, goals and shared vision can be realized.

A nation, as much as a business, can only be as progressive and prosperous as its brand image is.

African countries like Kenya and Mauritius have amply demonstrated this.

It also stands to reason that in the absence of Brand Zimbabwe, little will be known about us within the community of nations, so a robust brand image will grow Zimbabwe exponentially.

In God I believe.

Twitter username: @VictoriaRuzvid2; E-mail: [email protected]; [email protected]

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