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Barbara Holloway

DBA Graduate - 2007

Thesis title

micro-small business owner resistance to IT

Supervisor(s)

Charles-Clemens Rüling
This research studies the real-world problem of resistance or delayed implementation of information technologies (IT) by micro-small business owners (MSBO) at the initiation of their business. This thesis therefore attempts to answers the question, Why do MSBOs resist or delay IT when they start their businesses? In addition, it aims to use the results to encourage MSBOs to integrate the use of IT at the very start of their business. A MSBO consists of an individual business owner who employs one to nine employees and usually is the sole employee. These establishments are colloquially known as “Mom and Pop” businesses, in which the MSBO is the CEO, maintenance employee, and all other employees in the business, though a spouse might be another employee. Furthermore, this study defines IT usage as the use of personal or networked computers to run various types of software that aid in daily business operations and revenue tracking. With this broad range of uses, the intent in this research is to focus on the rudimentary beginnings of IT use in business. One consistent finding reveals that MSBOs are well aware of IT and its benefits, yet many still do not implement IT at start of their business. A simple drive or walk on any street finds any number of small businesses. This observation serves as evidence that the community of small business owners should have thoughts and opinions about business ownership and its varied experiences and practices. Moreover, previous studies on the use if IT by businesses reveal the need to question small business owners’ understanding of IT, as well as their knowledge about the benefits of using it from the start of their businesses. This thesis reveals that MSBOs provide considerable revenue and income earning opportunities. That contribution, coupled with existing performance statistics, qualifies this community of business owners as of interest to continued research.