By Oswald Jones, Fiona Tilley

* attracts on up to date empirical obtrusive to demonstrate how SMEs can develop into extra leading edge throughout the creation of recent items and services.* Discusses the powerful and effective use of knowledge expertise via broadening administration talents and data.

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Extra resources for Competitive Advantage in SMEs: Organising for Innovation and Change

Example text

Encouraging smaller firms to be more innovatory through investment in R&D is seen as an important way of improving competitiveness in individual companies and productivity in the economy as a whole. In the other two areas that are linked to productivity, enterprise and competition, there have been a number of government strategies to improve UK performance since New Labour were first elected in 1997. Attempts to create a more entrepreneurial culture include changes to capital gains tax (CGT) to encourage investment in business assets, modifications to bankruptcy law, the £96 million Phoenix Fund (business support for the socially excluded) and the introduction of the Small Business Service (SBS) to ensure that government support for smaller firms is ‘simpler and more coherent’.

The authors conclude by acknowledging that their theoretical framework is complex and therefore difficult to operationalise but is ‘higher-level and closer to performance’ than lower-level variables such as the entrepreneur’s age, education, experience or background. Equally, the framework 20 COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE IN SMEs has broader implications for supporting SMEs: ‘A policy implication is that developing competent entrepreneurs in the long term seems to be a more important issue than directly providing them with more resources or a positive environment’ (Man and Chan, 2002, p.

The latter, which include training, motivation, coordination and integration, are central to the exploitation of cost-saving economies which are critical to improved competitiveness (Davies and Brady, 2000). Teece et al. (1997) argue that the creation of ‘dynamic capabilities’ which represent a firm’s ability to respond to a changing business environment are dependent on its business processes. Organisations confronted with changing markets or changing technologies have to develop new sets of capabilities to avoid the creation of ‘core rigidities’ (Leonard-Barton, 1995).

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