University of Hertfordshire

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Original languageEnglish
Pages1-2
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jun 2022
EventTHE 10th INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON EMERGING CHALLENGES: STRATEGIC ADAPTATION IN THE WORLD OF UNCERTAINTIES - Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam
Duration: 4 Nov 20225 Nov 2022

Conference

ConferenceTHE 10th INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON EMERGING CHALLENGES: STRATEGIC ADAPTATION IN THE WORLD OF UNCERTAINTIES
Abbreviated title10th Conference on Emerging Challenges ICECH
Country/TerritoryViet Nam
Period4/11/225/11/22

Abstract

ABSTRACT
Objectives:
This paper explores the impact of a national programme to help Small to Medium-sized Enterprises (SME) to grow their businesses, with particular focus on the entrepreneurial leaders’ abilities. The research was carried out over a six-month timeframe, where they undertook a self-diagnostic audit of their business skills, challenges and growth ambitions, and then completed with a self-assessment of their growth action plans for the next six-months. One business was singled out to undertake a detailed analysis of their business model innovation journey, with a particular focus on eight aspects of their business operations. This was repeated in Hanoi Small Business Community working with HUST, and the two communities compared. This paper presents the results from our analysis of the similarities and differences of small business and university support programmes focused on business growth in fast-moving sectors.
Prior Work:
The UK Government and many of the key sectors are increasingly focusing on growth, sustainability, and diversity. Nearly one in two businesses surveyed in Hertfordshire small business community (60,000), under the HBSGS study, identified revenue growth, sustainability and diversity as being in their top three concerns regarding longer-term growth and survival. So it is not surprising that these same businesses are focusing on the key product and process innovation, general business systems and market strategies as means to engineer future solutions that both appeal to their existing and prospective customer base, and meet either sector/government expectations for future growth business areas .
Approach
The research philosophy was to break the research down into two key phases. The first was the development of a survey instrument to help capture the business entrepreneurs’ perspectives of the key challenges and issues impacting on their business, with the one independent variable being the selected business entrepreneurs on this 12 week Help to Grow: Management programmes. A number of dependent were then measured against the entrepreneurs skills and competencies and their overall business goals and aspirations. The main variables were (Business operations, Management practices, External finances, External activities, Business Expectations, Previous Business Support Experiences). The second phase of the study focused on one business to explore their particular BMI journey. Periodically collecting stories, actions and outcomes and other documentation over the Six-month timeframe.

Results:
The survey instrument analysis provided overall descriptive statistics of the three dependent variables (attitudes, values and practices) against the five sub-scales (operational processes, suppliers, product strategies, business strategy and business performance). Sample t-tests were analysed to identify specific significant differences and cross-correlational analysis of the relationships between the variables. By splitting the data into those enterprises that experience either operational, product and service strategy, overall business strategy or performance challenges, these businesses showed significant differences. Our case study, provided further insights into the learning and transformational journey associated with business model innovation and growth. Studying the three distinct business model innovation journey’s highlighted the challenges they met when dealing with issues of changing processes, leadership, culture and product developments. The learning and transformational journey was the closely linked to the business entrepreneur’s values and actions, and how they facilitated the internal and external sourcing of appropriate knowledge, expertise and skills, from this initial 12-week growth programme to achieve their desired deliverables identified through the programmes initial diagnostic audit.

Implications
The initial analysis and the case study highlight the value of these short programmes focused on developing the leadership and management skills of these business entrepreneurs and their small businesses, especially when these entrepreneurs are desiring long-term business growth. The contrasting attitudes, values and actions of these entrepreneurs towards their business model innovation and transformative journey. Small business performance metrics help identify the critical components of their business model problems. Sector and company driven growth aspirations and the means to achieve this are effectively solved by the combination of the businesses and outside sources of knowledge and expertise, help create an imaginative and enterprising environment to solve these challenges and develop a credible growth action plan.

Value:
Our business analysis and single case study, and the associated learning and transformative journeys of our businesses, demonstrate that these types of business programmes can deliver high-value support. The business audit conducted at the beginning of the 12-week intensive programme and then working with the businesses up to 12 months after have a positive impact on the business performance and their growth potential. When this is aligned with the resulting enterprises’ business model innovation and transformation, and the mapping of a specific growth action plan then the results are impressive. This can then be used to support the business entrepreneur and their development of leadership and management skills.

Keywords: business model Innovation, Business growth, Leadership and Management.

ID: 27732235