The Search for Opportunities by Small Business Owners


  • Laurence G. Weinzimmer Bradley University
  • Paul C. Nystrom University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee


This paper identifies specific factors that cause some small business owners to search for new opportunities while other owners choose to remain with the status quo. Using concepts drawn from the literatures in decision making. entrepreneurship, organization theory, and strategy, we develop a model of factors that stimulate opportunity identification. Determinants include characteristics of the industry environment, intentions and personalities of small business owners, and strategic planning activities. The model is then applied to two actual small businesses in order to illustrate its potential usefulness. Implications for small business managers,  consultants,  and business researchers  are discussed.


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