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1.1   Background of the Study

Organization’s success not only depends on what organizations currently providing but also depends on how the organizations can make change to improve whatever they are providing from the marketing standpoint, the socio-economic justification for the existence of any business organization is the satisfaction of customers’ needs and wants. The organizational survival over-time depends on its ability to create loyal customers because its products match the needs of the buyers. Thus, the organization meets its basic responsibility to the society through its product offerings. Planning is a continuous process which involves decisions or choices, about alternative ways of using available resources with the aim of achieving a particular product at some time in the future, Silver E. A., Pyke D. F., Peterson R., (2008)

For a firm to compete effectively in the dynamic and competitive business environment and achieve set goals in terms of profitability, high sales volume, and large market share, it must continuously develop products and product lines to satisfy the constantly changing desires and needs of customers (Grundiche, 2004:168). These Organizational adjustments in response to new customer preferences even make it necessary to modify existing products, introduce new ones or eliminate products that are unsuccessful. Product development is a broad field of endeavour dealing with design, creation and marketing of new product, (Yanelle, 2005:92).

It encompasses product planning as well the technical activities of product research, engineering design, etc to take advantage of potential opportunities facing a company’s product idea in a market. Product development is very critical to organizational performance because the product is the cornerstone of the firm’s marketing mix: every other element rests on the product. Product is not used to mean only tangible ‘things’, but includes services (the intangibles) as well as things that can be touched and seen and tasted.

This explains why Kotler (1994:434) sees it as a bundle of physical, service, and symbolic particulars expected to yield satisfaction or benefits to the buyer. It enables managers to evaluate whether organizational objectives have been achieved, and is further used to develop and compensate managers. It helps managers monitor whether the company is moving in the direction they want it to go (Teeratansirikool.L, Siengthai. S, Badir.Y, 2013). The Telecommunication industry is considered to be one of the largest and most powerful industries in the global market, vis-à-vis technological advancement, with its operations covering every corner of the globe and with the world heavily dependent on communication. Today, activities in the telecommunication industry are composed of various procedures including service provision, sales of products like Handsets, Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) packs and other communications gadgets. While all this activities requires marketing, achieving efficient and effective marketing strategy by an organization is difficult, as a result of the ambiguity and dynamic of business factors (Brownie and Spender, 2005). Sound and robust marketing commitment on the part of organization and sales-people are important to the survival and growth of the communication companies, considering the subtle, unstable and seemingly hostile business environments in which contemporary business organizations operate (Creveling, 2004).

1.2   Statement of the Problem

The telecommunications industry in Rivers State, as many other countries in the world (Daniel, 2007) has in the recent past been among the most competitive industry of the economy.  Organizations from both the private and public sector are increasingly embracing the practice of strategic planning in anticipation that this would translate to improved performance.  The most obvious problems of telecommunication firms in Port Harcourt is how to provide effective services to the nation, which has been yearning for an improved telecommunication services for a long period of time. In response to that, the Federal Government provided for the creation of a company that will function purely on commercial basis.

Past and recent research studies have made it clear that there is an increased internal and external uncertainty due to emerging opportunities and threats, lack of the awareness of needs and of the facilities related issues and environment and lack of direction. Many organizations spend most of their time realizing and reacting to unexpected changes and problems instead of anticipating and preparing for them. This is called crisis management. Organizations caught off guard may spend a great deal of time and energy playing catch up.  They use up their energy coping with immediate problems with little energy left to anticipate and prepare for the next challenges. This vicious cycle locks many organizations into a reactive posture.

1.3   Purpose of the Study

The general purpose is to examine the effect of Product Planning and Organizational Performance of selected telecommunication firms in Port Harcourt while the specific objectives are:

1.     To determine the extent to which consumer needs influence organization performance

2      To ascertain extent to which Product design influences organization performance

1.4   Research Questions

From the above specific objectives, the following research questions are formulated:

1.     To what extent does Consumer needs affect organization performance?

2      To what extent does Product design affect organization performance?

1.5   Conceptual Framework of Product planning and Organizational Performance





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