The early stages of growth in social and healthcare service business : an explorative study
Simunaniemi, Anna-Mari; Saarela, Martti; Muhos, Matti (2017-05-17)
Simunaniemi, Anna-Mari; Saarela, Martti; Muhos, Matti. The early stages of growth in social and healthcare service business : an explorative study. In: Dermol, V. and Smrkolj, M. eds. MakeLearn 2017: Management Challenges in a Network Economy : Proceedings of the MakeLearn and TIIM International Conference, 17–19 May 2017, Lublin, Poland. pp. 135-142. http://www.toknowpress.net/ISBN/978-961-6914-21-5/MakeLearn2017.pdf
© 2017 International School for Social and Business Studies. Published under the terms of the Creative Commons CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 License. Published in this repository with the kind permission of the publisher.
Numerous models have attempted to clarify management priorities during the early stages of business growth. However, universal models provide only limited use for a business in its context. This study focuses on an approach based on configuration theories that are concerned with the actual growth process, and how managerial problems can be dealt with during a firm’s growth through presumed typical stages of development. The aim is to clarify the early stages of growth in social and healthcare service business. In this multiple-case study, the applicability of a four-stage framework describing the early stages of growth in service business is tested in the context of social and healthcare business. Critical Incident Technique was applied in twelve semi-structured entrepreneur interviews focused on critical incidents in the early stages of business growth in Northern Finland. The findings of this study highlight the viewpoints of entrepreneurs and relate their experiences on the service business framework from a particular perspective of social and healthcare business. Entrepreneurship research is contextbased phenomenon that should preferably be focused on the behaviour of real-life entrepreneurs, paying attention to the dilemmas and problems they face and the way they deal with it. The present study was designed with this standpoint in mind. The analysis of the critical incidents in the early stages of growth helps produce a comprehensive description of how business growth is identified and described by social and healthcare entrepreneurs. The findings provide new insights into the growth and management of social and healthcare companies.
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