How Do Entrepreneurial Growth Intentions Evolve? A Sensemaking-Sensegiving Perspective

  • Dev K. Dutta University of New Hampshire
  • Stewart Thornhill University of Western Ontario


In this paper, we develop a process model to explain how growth intentions evolve over the venture's life cycle. Adopting an inductive approach, we use case study data from 30 small and medium enterprises (SME) with an explicit focus on venture growth over five years. Three waves of data were collected from the same set of lead entrepreneurs in these firms to identify if and why their intentions to grow their businesses changed over the timeframe. Using grounded theory development, we formulate a model characterizing entrepreneurial growth intentions. The model incorporates a sensemaking-sensegiving perspective and is recognized in terms of its constituent 3Ps (Precursors, Process and Product), serving to capture the essential dynamic of the entrepreneurial growth intention process over time.


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How to Cite
DUTTA, Dev K.; THORNHILL, Stewart. How Do Entrepreneurial Growth Intentions Evolve? A Sensemaking-Sensegiving Perspective. Journal of Small Business Strategy, [S.l.], v. 24, n. 1, p. 61-76, jan. 2014. ISSN 2380-1751. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 22 apr. 2019.