Under which circumstances do family SMEs achieve high growth?:A behavioral perspective

Minola, Tommaso and Baù, Massimo and brumana, mara and De Massis, Alfredo (2022) Under which circumstances do family SMEs achieve high growth?:A behavioral perspective. International Small Business Journal, 40 (6). pp. 768-798. ISSN 0266-2426

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High-growth firms contribute disproportionately to the creation of employment, wealth and economic development on a global basis. Yet, knowledge of the circumstances under which such growth patterns occur is limited, and the findings with regard to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are inconclusive. Adopting the behavioural agency model, we analyse the effect of family control and related nuances (i.e. degree of family ownership and presence of a family chief executive officer (CEO)) on SME growth. Furthermore, we argue that the type of slack resources and their availability are a crucial organisational contingency when investigating high growth in SMEs. Using a sample of 39,631 European SMEs over a 13-year period, we find that family firms are less likely to achieve high growth compared to non-family firms; having a family CEO further reduces this likelihood. Instead, at higher (vs lower) levels of family ownership, the probability of family firms achieving high growth increases. Furthermore, the availability of high- and low-discretion slack resources influences these relationships. Our study advances current understanding of high growth in general, and family firms in particular.

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Journal Article
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International Small Business Journal
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The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, International Small Business Journal: Researching Entrepreneurship, 40 (6), 2022, © SAGE Publications Ltd, 2022 by SAGE Publications Ltd at the International Small Business Journal: Researching Entrepreneurship page: https://journals.sagepub.com/home/ISB on SAGE Journals Online: http://journals.sagepub.com/
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16 Jun 2022 11:00
Last Modified:
09 Oct 2023 00:46