According to Yesim Toduk Akis, founding partner of Amrop International Turkey, mistakes were made during the economic crisis because companies did not follow a methodical analysis in their downsizing process. Companies have to re-evaluate their work force as most of the lay-offs were emotional and targeted towards the high wage employees. Some companies lost the balance within their human capital and are now hastily trying to re-establish this resource from talent pools.
Akis points out that there were also serious changes in the international arena and adds: “There were very young managers, even 35 year old CEO’s. However with the crisis senior managers gained more importance.” With the economic downturn the value of seasoned, gray-haired, managers were re-discovered as they can better weather the crisis and overcome its difficulties. Despite these negative effects the crisis also had some benefits. SME’s were given the opportunity to pick from a pool of talented managers with international experiences who had been previously too expensive but were now left unemployed. SMEs were able to either recruit these professionals or render consulting services from them.
Marketing is one of the few areas within management where the rules of the game have not changed radically. However this is not to say that slight shifts have not occurred, especially behind on technological advances. Internet has enabled companies to deal with multiple customers and analyze customer specific data. Nevertheless, despite its proliferation, Internet did not enforce radical change to replace `traditional marketing´ methods with `Internet based´ e-marketing. In short the concepts of one-to-one marketing, i.e. convincing consumers individually to bring about decision making and inducing buying behavior, fell short of expectations specifically because purchasing habits did not evolve as expect and reflect upon the Internet. B2B (business-to-business) was one of the few areas where the Internet was used between business in areas such as trade, logistics, and collaboration.
The unrealized expectations disappointed everybody, especially NASDAQ. Akiş points out that the market capitalization of Internet companies has fallen drastically and adds: “This has affected Turkey very negatively”. Although they may not have had a great impact on consumer behavior, support for Internet technologies, which had profound affects in other areas, have ceased altogether.
Another area of change was in branding. Big brand names faced severe challenges due to the contractions in overall demand and the inability of the Internet to induce the expected stimulation. In this atmosphere smaller brands were able to make headway and gain important advances. Targeted brands were able to overtake those that were astray. In geographies where local and regional strategies were more important smaller brands gained even more. However those brands that did not loose their global focus were able to hold ground.