• Entrepreneurs and Friendship: the ties of Mutuality

      Manning, Paul; Leeds Metropolitan University
      The purpose of this paper is to present theoretically informed research into the significance of business friendships for entrepreneurs. The importance of social ties for economic success has been examined in depth from a number of academic perspectives. For example from a business ethics perspective, Jonathan Schonsheck has taken Aristotle’s classical analysis to argue that business friendships are an example of ‘incomplete friendships for utility’ (2000, pp. 897-910). Laura Spence has also argued that business friendships offer a positive contribution to the well-being of actors (2004). Network theory literature, which is extensive (see Nitin & Eccles, 1990, for an overview), has also considered business friendships and there is a further subset of network research focusing on entrepreneurial processes from a social network viewpoint (Blundel & Smith, 2001; O’Donnel, 2004; Shaw & Conway, 2000, pp. 367-383). Moreover, Mark Granovetter’s seminal article ‘The strength of weak ties’ (1973) can be thought of as theorising business friendships in network terms. Additional related research fields, such as social capital theory (Castiglione et al, 2008), have also considered the significance of social ties (business friendships) for success in the marketplace.
    • Marketing and entrepreneurship: An integrated view from the entrepreneur's perspective

      Lam, Wing; Harker, Michael J.; University of Chester; Strathclyde University (SAGE, 2013-08-28)
      This article explores the role and significance of marketing in the entrepreneurial process.Utilising an 11-year longitudinal study, supported by a context-rich interpretive approach, the interrelationship between marketing and entrepreneurship at different stages of the business life cycle are examined. Under an effectuation and enactment framework, entrepreneurship is neither ends-driven nor means-driven, but a consequence of the interplay between actors and social context through ongoing enactment. As the ‘joint core actors of the business’, entrepreneurs actively interact with their customers in shaping the marketing activities of the business to meet their ends.
    • The condition of smallness; how what it means to be small deters firms from getting bigger

      Anderson, Alistair; Ullah, Farid; University of Chester (Emerald, 2014-12-12)
      Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine and explain why most small firms remain small. A new conceptual framework – the condition of smallness – is proposed. Design/methodology/approach – A critical examination of the literature about the nature of being a small firm is first conducted. Employing an inductive analysis of responses from a survey of 2,521 small business owners about employment regulation, the nature and effects of smallness is examined. Findings – It was found that owners' choice making combines with perceptions about their resources to produce a condition of smallness. The condition of smallness is conceptualised as the circularity perceptions, attitudes and consequent practices that reflect lack of knowledge, time and capability. It is argued that this condition of smallness inhibits growth to create a wicked problem that explains why most small firms don't grow. Research limitations/implications – This work is largely conceptual, albeit the argument is grounded in, and illustrated by, empirical data. The findings may not be generalisable beyond this paper's data sets, but may be generalisable conceptually. Originality/value – The focus of much scholarly work has been on growth firms. Yet the typical small firm is excluded so that the issues of smallness are often overlooked. This paper, therefore contributes to understanding why small firms don't grow.
    • The performance of entrepreneurial ventures: Examining the role of marketing practices

      Jayawarna, Dilani; Jones, Ossie; Lam, Wing; Phua, Sabrina; University of Liverpool; Durham University; Manchester Metropolitan University (Emerald, 2014-11-11)
      Purpose – Despite the importance of marketing to the success of entrepreneurial ventures very few researchers have studied the links with new business performance. The purpose of this paper is to examine a number of marketing practices in relation to the performance of new firms. Furthermore, the study considers the moderating influence of market competitiveness on the marketing practice-performance relationship. Design/methodology/approach – Both postal and web surveys were utilized to collect responses from 128 entrepreneurs in the early stages of business creation. The data were subjected to exploratory and confirmatory factory analyses to establish the marketing practices in new ventures. These results were then subjected to hierarchical regression analysis to study the marketing-performance relationship. Further analysis was conducted to explore the moderation hypotheses. Findings – The results demonstrate that some practices generally associated with marketing – selective distribution, market segmentation and advertising – have limited impact on performance in new ventures. In contrast, other practices such as product/service innovation, market research and service quality and functionality – do help establish competitive advantage. The results suggest that marketing practices associated with “entrepreneurial behaviour” and not “hard” marketing techniques drive new venture success. The results also support the moderation hypotheses confirming that market conditions help explain the role of marketing in new venture success. Research limitations/implications – The paper offers a new theoretical framework to better understand the marketing-performance relationship in new ventures and offers suggestions as to the specific conditions for effective use of various marketing practices. Originality/value – This is one of the first attempts to explore the underlying mechanisms that support marketing practices in new ventures. It reveals the hidden dimensions of the marketing-performance relationship and thereby makes a contribution to both the marketing and entrepreneurship literatures.
    • Turkish delight a public affairs study on family business: The influence of owners in the entrepreneurship orientation of family-owned businesses

      Ozdemir, Ozlem; Harris, Phil; University of Chester; Regents University, London
      Family-owned businesses (FOBs) are as unique as the families that own and control them. As reported by Miller, Steier, and Le Breton-Miller (2003, p.513), the founders of many of these businesses try to continue their legacy and ensure continued family control via intergenerational succession, as when they hand over leadership to their children. The initial statistics suggest only approximately one third of FOBs survive into the second generation, with just 12% remaining “viable” by the third, and only about 3% operating into the fourth generation or beyond. Thus, one of the central problems for FOBs is this inability to ensure competent cross-generational family leadership through successful transfer of ownership and management to the next family generation. This is a core issue for the modern public affairs practitioner and policy maker, nationally and internationally, and the Turkish case is a good example of the multicomplex issues evident in succession planning and leadership for business founders and leaders in these organisations. A firm's strategic orientation is an indicator of the processes developed to integrate new information, to coordinate decisions, to examine the evolution of environmental factors, and to assess new projects (Escriba-Esteve, Sanchez-Peinado & Sanchez-Pei- nado, 2009). However, few studies have provided a framework that jointly analyses the FOB owner characteristics, the mediating processes and attitudes by which owners shape the direction of their family firms, and the effect of these postures on firm performance. This paper addresses the influence of family business owner, over the behaviour of FOBs. By treating FOB owners' characteristics as predictors of a firm's strategic ori- entation, we seek to provide a deeper understanding of how the characteristics of FOB owners shape decision making process and FOBs' behaviours in order to suc- cessfully survive in generations. This study introduced the concept of FOB's entre- preneurship orientation (EO) as a variable that mediates between FOB owners' characteristics and business performance. The objective of this paper is twofold: (a) to identify the demographic predictors FOBs' EO and (b) to analyse the role of EO as a mediator of the relationship between FOB owners' characteristics and FOBs' performance.
    • What influences ethnic entrepreneurs’ decision to start up: Some evidence from Aberdeen, Scotland

      Ullah, Farid; Rahman, Md Zillur; Smith, Robert; Beloucif, Ahmed; University of Chester (Emerald, 2016-11-21)
      ABSTRACT The purpose of this paper is to investigate the factors that influences ethnic entrepreneurs decision making to start a new business in Aberdeen, Scotland. By doing so, this paper investigates the motives, drivers and attitudes of ethnic minorities towards entrepreneurship opportunities in Aberdeen, Scotland. Using qualitative data, we explore the motivational factors of 25 ethnic entrepreneurs by conducting in depth face to face interviews with them. Our results reveal some interesting motivational factors which influences ethnic entrepreneurs decision to dive in and starting up a new venture in Aberdeen, Scotland. Some of these include a positive mind set or attitude, self-efficacy, strong determination, market research knowledge (due diligence), good financial management, and knowing the local business culture along with others.