The purpose of this paper is to investigate the sources and nature of opportunities used byowner-managers of small and medium size (SMEs) firms in order to grow their businesses.In addition to the owner-manager’s desire for growth, clearly there needs to be bothopportunities to pursue and sufficient management activities that will discover suchopportunities, so that a business can grow. These opportunities may originate throughsome form of environmental change such as advances in technology or by exploitingchanges in the marketplace, for example, the exit of a competitor.Research was carried out within twenty SMEs whose owner-manager’s aimed to growtheir businesses. The focus of the research was on the sources of opportunities theyencountered and how and why opportunities were recognized by these firms.The key findings of this research illustrate that the majority of sources for businessopportunities for SMEs in this study lie in the market place and are not a directconsequence of environmental change. Traditional marketing analysis tools can, therefore,identify significant sources and scope for growth opportunities for SMEs.�
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