The Positive Effect of Motivation and International Orientation on SME Growth
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Original versionJournal of small business management (Print). 2016, 54 (2), 659-678. 10.1111/jsbm.12163
This empirical study on small and medium-sized enterprise growth investigates the relationship between motivation for growth, international orientation, and subsequent performance by following 247 firms over 11 years. Using a combination of regression analysis and structural equation modeling, the authors find the international orientation of the firm to be a consistent predictor of growth in revenue and exports. The authors also find the international orientation of the firm to be closely interrelated with motivation for growth: Firms with managers and owners having a strong motivation for growth tend also to have managers with high international orientation and display superior growth both domestically and abroad. Whereas motivation seems independent of past performance, it has a profound positive influence on the growth in revenue. Moreover, the findings reveal that some firms are able to sustain high growth rates over an extended period of time. The study supports the contention that some firms are able to systematically outperform the rest.