Orientation, Environment and Strategy
The McGill International Entrepreneurship series
Chapter 6: Cultural Effects on Delegation in Small Business Life Cycle
6. Cultural effects on delegation in the small business life cycle Supara Kapasuwan and Jerman Rose The importance of small business and new ventures has been thoroughly examined in academic research and literature. Many researchers have proposed stages-of-development models, most of which, differing in number of stages, usually follow a linear process, from start-up, rapid growth and investment expansion to a period of stability or maturity (Churchill and Lewis, 1983; Scott and Bruce, 1987; Dodge and Robbins, 1992). Frequently researchers suggest that a small firm that grows rapidly will outpace the founder–manager’s managerial capabilities at some point during its development. If the firm’s growth is to be maintained, the founder–manager should be replaced by ‘professional managers’ (Tashakori, 1980; Churchill and Lewis, 1983; Flamholtz, 1986; Baird and Meshoulam, 1988; Fuller-Love and Scapens, 1997). Other researchers have examined whether founder–managers of small firms have sufficient capabilities and skills to manage high-growth firms. They found no significant differences between the performance of foundermanaged and professionally-managed firms (Willard et al., 1992; Daily and Dalton, 1992). However, as a firm develops, changes in managerial requirements play an important role. We define delegation as the willingness of a founder–manager to yield the authority of an important management function to others. The founder–manager’s willingness to delegate several functions can be crucial for success (Rubenson and Gupta, 1996). The significance of delegation has been widely discussed in small business literature (Cuba and Milbourn, 1982; Davidsson, 1989; Gilmore and Kazanjian, 1989; Mount et al...
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