Factors determining the sustainability of selected small and medium–sized enterprises
Wiese, Johannes Stephanes
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Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are a definitive driving force of economic stability in the marketplace due to the number of jobs created by the small and medium sized business sector and there is a positive influence on a country’s national economy. While a considerable amount of research focuses on SME sustainability, empirical tests on the factors influencing sustainability of SMEs have not been piloted and researched to the completest prospective. The primary purpose of this study was to identify the determining factors that influence the sustainability of selected small and medium-sized enterprises. The empirical investigation was conducted among 135 SME owners and/-or managers in the Potchefstroom area of the North West province of South Africa. The methodology included the sampling procedure, data collection, questionnaire development and statistical techniques later used due to the nature of responses. Results were analysed with regard to the descriptive statistics and correlations between questions included in the questionnaire. The results of this study concluded that there are certain factors considered as important contributors for SME sustainability. The importance of this study is the contribution of a sustainability framework which will aid SMEs in the management of sustainability within their enterprises. The further development of a SME programme to equip the management members could be derived from the results in an attempt to ensure the encouragement of this very important commercial driver of the economy.