Influence of entrepreneurial management practices on performance of small and medium enterprises in Juba, South Sudan
Akoy, William Akoy
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Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector development is one of the recent key issues in developing countries. As a developing country, the development of the SME sector in South Sudan is essential. The growth of SME as a support industry helps to strengthen the large industries. SME development is a foundation of large industries because every large enterprise, has had the experience of starting their businesses as an SME. Thus, the future of the large enterprise is dependent on the development of SME. SME development is also an important aspect for the labour market because it employs the labour force and offers wages to workers. There has been ongoing debate on whether entrepreneurial management practices would have effect on performance of small and medium enterprises. The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between entrepreneurial management practices and performance of small and medium enterprises in juba, South Sudan. The objectives of the study were to establish the effect of strategic orientation, entrepreneur’s commitment, and management structure and business appraisal on the performance of SMEs. This study adopted descriptive research designs. The target population was 10,000 SMEs operating in Juba, South Sudan. Fisher, Laing and Stoeckel formula was used to obtain a sample size of 95. The data collection instruments were questionnaires. Descriptive analysis was used to analyse quantitative data obtained from closed ended and likert scale questions. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) computer software was used for data analysis. The study found that strategic orientation effects performance of SMEs in Juba. The SMEs continually monitor customers and competitors to find new ways to improve customer satisfaction. Entrepreneurs’ commitment and performance have a significant positive relationship. The entrepreneurs’ commitment increases their positive attitude towards the business and ultimately increases the productivity of the business. Management structure was also found to have effect on performance of SMEs in Juba. The SMEs owners emphasise getting things done by following formal processes and procedures. Business appraisal and performance were found to have a significant positive relationship. Business appraisal helps determining the worth of their business and in planning where the business is going to be in the future. The study recommends that SMEs need to identify and acquire new customers. They should encourage customers to give feedback about the products and services to be informed on customers’ future needs. Entrepreneurs need to be committed, ambitious and confident in their abilities. The commitment will increase the entrepreneurs’ positive attitude towards the business and ultimately increase the productivity of the business. The SMEs should continue designing the management structure as well as ensure that the effective communication is maintained. The entrepreneurs need to continue performing business appraisals to help determining the worth of their business and in planning where the business is going to be in the future. Assessing the value of the business is expected to motivate to achieve their targets. The researcher recommends further studies which can include investigation of external factors which may have influence on performance of SMEs in Juba, South Sudan.