Managing rapid growth in entrepreneurial ventures
- Authors: Nothnagel, Stephanus Andreas Walters
- Date: 2012-08-29
- Subjects: Small business - Management. , Small business - South Africa - Management. , Entrepreneurship - South Africa.
- Type: Thesis
- Identifier: uj:3418 , http://hdl.handle.net/10210/6815
- Description: M.Comm. , A stable and growing economy is essential for the well being of any country and its people. To make this possible, most able people in the economy should be making a positive and active contribution. More than forty six percent of all economically active people in South Africa are currently unemployed. It is further expected that only ten in every hundred people coming into the job market in 1994, will find employment in the formal sector (Anon. 4994:6). These alarming statistics are only partly due to the current economic recession and political instability. What we are experiencing is part of a worldwide trend of permanent structural changes in traditional employers such as the government and large companies. As described in a leading article in Time International, the formal sector is no longer able to supply large numbers of stable and secure employment opportunities (Church, 1993:20). A similar view of this worldwide trend in western economies, in terms of employment creation needs and the changing employment structures is held by well known business Drucker (1986:13-30). He describes however the possibilities of an "entrepreneurial economy" wherein the majority of jobs are created by entrepreneurial ventures. His observation is supported by statistics of the United States showing that small business comprises 94 percent of the enterprises in the economy, they employ 58 percent of the work force, and have generated 87 percent of the new jobs over the last twenty years (100 percent during the 1980-1982 economic recovery) (Keats & Bracker, 1988:41). The position in the South African economy and the apparent solution is likely to be similar. Taking into account such factors as the relatively smaller formal sector, the lack of truly huge and international companies, the shortage of investment capital and the huge unemployment numbers, the role that small businesses will have to play in future economic growth and job creation in South Africa, is likely to be even more significant. In the light of this, it is extremely concerning to note that of the large numbers of new ventures that are started annually, as many as 90 percent may eventually fail (Birley, 1986:361). It is therefore important for the economic future of South Africa, that new ventures are created, but also that they survive, successfully develop and grow into larger established companies providing more jobs. Such growing companies may eventually even enter the international market, further improving the economic growth and prosperity of the country.
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Critical success factors for a small knowledge based service firm
- Authors: Midlane, Anthony Robert
- Date: 2012-09-11
- Subjects: Success in business. , Small business - Management.
- Type: Thesis
- Identifier: uj:10012 , http://hdl.handle.net/10210/7403
- Description: M.Comm. , The knowledge-based service industry consists of numerous professional practices. The nature of the service is a function of the type of knowledge offered e.g. technical specialists, artistic design specialists and legal specialists to name but a few. Providing a service instead of a product to satisfy a need in the market requires special unique skills and approaches. Since most professional practices are small, the total management task is the responsibility of the partners or the board of directors. In an area of specialisation, such as engineering, general management skills are also required. Knowledge of finance, marketing, personnel, operations and general management aspects are important. The study incorporates a broad set of issues from economic aspects to management functions to determine what the critical success factors (CSFs) should be to ensure the success of small professional knowledge-based organisations. Internal factors are considered and related to how the firm operates. The study extends externally to examine how clients perceive the services rendered. From a general point of view, managerial competence is rated as the most important critical success factor. It influences the relationship between the client and the professional providing the service. The role of the client's opinion is important when providing an effective service. It is vital to know what the client needs and how to satisfy the needs. Use is made of a service - quality rating model to determine where customer expectations are not being met. The study is concluded by recommending that the CSFs be actively used to focus the firm's internal activities and resources on the external client requirements. In essence, management must do more active work, in areas such as cost control, where clients feel they are being neglected. More attention needs to be focused on the tangible aspects of service delivery. To bring about success as well as attending to the listed CSFs, training was deemed to be necessary with regards to quality management, financial management, marketing management and personnel management. All action plans that could be developed by the service provider need to be simple to implement on an ongoing basis. Time and effort is to satisfy a client's needs. The results of this study indicate that management should focus their efforts on the tasks of management. It does not suggest that they actually do the work of transforming knowledge into tangible products. It does say that management should actively influence those people who do the work of knowledge transformation. The client should always be the centre of the firm's activities.
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