Entrepreneurial orientations and exports performance: evidence from Tanzanian small and medium sized enterprises

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University of Dar es Salaam
This study examines the entrepreneurial orientations and export performance evidence from Small and Medium Sized enterprises in Tanzania. The study argues that the influence of personal traits in executing international operations is not given much emphasis. Many efforts are put into external environments like trade regulation, economic, political and social-cultural environments. These entrepreneurial attributes are within individuals and therefore need first priority. This study focuses on three entrepreneurial orientations which are proactiveness, innovativeness and risk taking abilities in relation to export performance. This study used qualitative analysis where five cases were selected and in-depth interviews conducted with owner the firms. The case study approach was employed to provide in-depth findings on the entrepreneurial attributes and their impact on export performance. Cross case analysis was used to both primary and secondary data where they were analyzed in each case and across the case. Results indicated that across the five cases studied, entrepreneurial orientations play a great role in influencing export performances. Export market information, ability to see opportunities and challenges before others and taking calculated risks have a great impact on export performances. The study concludes that managers and owners of businesses have a great responsibility of scanning their own entrepreneurial attributes in executing international operations. The study further recommend that in order for exporting firms to be successful in export markets, owner or managers of these small businesses should adopt proactive orientation.
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Enterprenuership, Exports, Small business, Tanzania
Pius, K. H (2012) Entrepreneurial orientations and exports performance: evidence from Tanzanian small and medium sized enterprises, Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. (Available at