By Ibrahim SaniShawai
Achievement and positive impact anywhere in the world are not product of accidents but the results of hard work, diligence, commitment, team work, creativity amongst others.
Kano Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO) has experienced some impressive improvements within the context of communication as a result of team work under my leadership.
Within the last two years of my appointment as the Head of Corporate Communications, KEDCO has witnessed commendable improvements in terms of its image personality before the general public; this is no mere feat in a world where fake news purveyors have been on their toes to smear the image of governments, organizations and others. Managing the image of any company now is a herculean task that only the brave could undertake and so far KEDCO’s image and visibility have been maintained in good light and properly placed in its right perspective under the team am supervising.
One of the good things in KEDCO is that from the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer to the Management and down to the grassroots staff, everybody is on the same page; this is also due to the effective and vibrant communicative model that was initiated and used within the last two years by the C.C team. In fact to sum that up, there is no room for lacuna in terms of information dissemination internally or externally.
Effective business communication is at the forefront of significant processes and must be efficient so that personnel can successfully share and communicate information that helps to run a successful organization, and to drive the most critical business processes; this is what the C.C team under my leadership has been doing in KEDCO and everyone is witnessing the impact.
Some of the major challenges as a company especially since the emergence of COVID-19 are the issue of electricity bills collection, vandalism and theft of our equipment, meter bypass and other economic sabotage. Through effective engagement with relevant stakeholders, KEDCO has been able to navigate the barriers which have led to the reduction in economic sabotage and the activities of vandals. With our good relations with media outfits in Kano franchise, we have been able to secure the understanding of some customers towards the need to continue to pay their bills without leaving outstanding as it had been the case over time.
On metering, our communication team has been able to break meter apathy by customers and today more customers are now embracing metering and that has helped KEDCO consolidate its metering ambition to get all customers in Kano franchise metered, while supporting the Mass Metering Programme of the Federal Government. So far, through massive awareness, thousands of our customers in Kano, Katsina and Jigawa states have been metered and we are still driving the initiative as metering remain a continuous process in Kano franchise.
Within the last two years, I and my team had brainstormed ideas to improve different communicative channels available to us to strengthen KEDCO’s media relations especially the social media platforms for effective and efficient service delivery and addressing complaints of any sort in line with what our customers want using platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. With our media strategies, we have added over 20, 000 followers on Facebook and Twitter while on Instagram, our followers have surged too. All these are part of the strategies to reach all categories of customers to sap inputs or complaints to improve service delivery in line with best global standards.
Having introduced special radio and video jingles within my first year in office which is the first of its kind particularly the fact that the jingles were rendered in English, Hausa and Pidgin, we have been able to penetrate key messages of vandalism, energy theft, meter bypass, whistle blowing policy, prompt payment of bills to our numerous customers through local radio stations in Kano, Katsina and Jigawa States, national newspapers and other online platforms as well.
As a unit, the Corporate Communication within the next one year would ensure that we re-strategize modern ways to provide quality service delivery to our numerous customers while smoothening relations with other stakeholders in a manner that would help KEDCO meet up its targets in terms of improving its revenue, reduction in ATC &C losses, cases of vandalism, energy theft, transformer oil theft and meter bypass.
We will work to ensure that other channels are initiated to help connect KEDCO to its customers in meeting up with their demands in terms of swiftly responding to their complaints. Our vision is to build a leading customer centric brand in power distribution in Nigeria and Africa, unlocking more opportunities for our customers through quality service delivery while remaining a top choice of all business stakeholders in power distribution.
Over the last one year, I have come to build a stronger bond with my colleagues in KEDCO because such strong association among individuals working together in the same organization is one secret ingredient I have been leveraging and will continue to in view of its importance to achieving the desired employees’ team work which helps us to share a special bond and deliver our best.
In the coming year, I hope to build on the good relations with my colleagues, harness their advice and constructive criticisms towards ensuring that KEDCO gets it right always vis-à-vis its short, medium and long term goals. In this regard, I sincerely appreciate the immense contributions from all my colleagues and also particularly the MD/CEO, Dr Jamil IsyakuGwamna whose mentoring I have gained a whole lot from in terms of leadership and ability to navigate the storms of challenges to always emerge courageously.
As it is often said that the biggest room in the world is the room for improvement, KEDCO will continue to improve and fine-tune ways to ensure that the organization becomes the delight of customers leveraging modern technological tools to advance the brand of KEDCO to make the company the best customer centric organization in Nigeria and beyond.
Shawai is the Head of KEDCO’s Corporate Communications.