Differentiation strategies in mature small firms – The impact of uncertain environments

Verreynne, Martie-Louise and Meyer, Denny (2011) Differentiation strategies in mature small firms – The impact of uncertain environments. International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 12 3: 327-342. doi:10.1504/IJESB.2011.039011

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Author Verreynne, Martie-Louise
Meyer, Denny
Title Differentiation strategies in mature small firms – The impact of uncertain environments
Journal name International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1476-1297
1741-8054
Publication date 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1504/IJESB.2011.039011
Volume 12
Issue 3
Start page 327
End page 342
Total pages 6
Place of publication Geneva, Switzerland
Publisher Inderscience Publishers
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Mature small firms often struggle to grow profits as more competitors enter the market. These firms are also less likely to exhibit those entrepreneurial behaviours which underpin sustained performance. The use of differentiation strategies is one such approach which mature firms may be able to sustain - providing them with means to deal with uncertain environments. This article examines this supposition in a sample of firms employing fewer than 100 workers. Four hypotheses relating the business strategies of small firms to performance and age, organisational structure and environmental uncertainty are tested in an empirical study of 320 small firms. Structural equation analyses of the data indicate that innovative differentiation is significantly associated with performance, especially for firms operating in dynamic environments. However, it is found that mature firms are less likely to use differentiation strategies to nurture performance in such environments. These findings and their implications are elaborated in this article.
Keyword Differentiation strategy
Mature firms
Small firms
Firm performance
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
UQ Business School Publications
 
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Created: Sun, 13 Mar 2011, 10:15:28 EST by Dr Martie-louise Verreynne on behalf of UQ Business School