A Descriptive Analysis of the Influence of Entrepreneurial Orientation Dimensions On the Performance of SMEs in Kenya

Abstract

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play an important role in the world economy. They contribute substantially to income output and employment. Indeed, they dominate the world business. In spite of this, studies have failed to identify and assess the corporate entrepreneurship dimensions that lead to good performance, especially in Kenya. As such, based on a study of SMEs in Kenya, this paper examines the relationships that obtain between Entrepreneurial Orientation (EO) and firm performance among SMEs. Specifically, the study sought to find out the effect of entrepreneurial innovativeness, risk-taking and proactiveness on firm performance. The study was guided by the resource based view (RBV), contingency theory, theories of entrepreneurship and the marketing theory. It adopted explanatory research design using a census sample with the target population being all the top 536 medium sized firms between 2006 and 2013. Data was collected using a questionnaire and analyzed using descriptive statistics, Pearson’s bivariate correlation, multiple regression and moderated regression analysis. Results revealed that entrepreneurial innovativeness, risk taking and proactiveness have a direct positive relationship with performance of SMEs. From the findings, the study recommended the need to intensify initiatives that encourage a better understanding of EO dimensions in boosting firms’ competitive positions and superior performance; firms should be more entrepreneurial in order to attain superior performance and survive the intensively competitive market environment. They should continuously innovate, especially through new product development, being first to enter the market with new products and in the use of creative new solutions that lead them to be recognized by competitors as leaders in innovation. SME owners/managers also need to enhance their risk-taking behaviour by encouraging staff to take risks with new ideas, make effective changes to their products and be willing to accept at least moderate levels of risk, engage in risky investments and have the courage to seize new opportunities, even if this may involve great financial risks

Keywords: Entrepreneurial Orientation Dimensions, Influence, Kenya, Performance, SMEs


Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 31-45 (Download PDF)

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