Does Training Improve the Business Performance of Small-Scale Entrepreneurs? An Evaluative Study

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In surveys conducted in different countries over four years, the authors investigated why entrepreneurs in the same sector and during the same period were not equally successful. From the findings of this research they developed a new three-day training programme to address primarily skills and techniques relating to personal initiative, planning, goal setting and innovation. The training programme follows the ‘action learning’ approach, which links learning to activity, and is based on the assumption that competencies and behavioural patterns can be learned. A sample of 84 entrepreneurs was selected in South Africa. In the first stage (T1), before the start of the training, a standardized interview was conducted. The sample was then split into two groups: the ‘experimental’ group, which participated in the training (T2) and the ‘control’ group (no training). After six months (T3) the results of the training group were compared with those of the control group through the use of behavioural measures. The results at this stage showed that members of the training group had made significantly better progress in their business performance than members of the control group.

Original languageEnglish
JournalIndustry and Higher Education
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)75-84
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 01.04.2006
Externally publishedYes

    Research areas

  • action learning, business owners, entrepreneurial training, evaluating business success
  • Business psychology