Unit 9 Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management

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This unit provides students with an understanding of the definition and scope of entrepreneurship and an understanding of the enablers and barriers to business start-up.Students will learn about the influence of national culture and economy on entrepreneurship and will explore the personal characteristics of entrepreneurs and the impact of personal situational factors, including education and background. Students will also learn about the role and importance of small firms to the economy, and about social enterprise and the social economy. Students will also be expected to understand the balance of risk and reward in starting a new venture and they will investigate and reflect on their own entrepreneurial and enterprising characteristics. Examples of entrepreneurs and start-up organisations will be discussed and students will be expected to draw on local, personal and general knowledge together with their learning to be able to identify the characteristics of entrepreneurial ventures.

Learning outcomes

LO1 Explore and illustrate the range of venture types that might be considered entrepreneurial

Scoping and defining entrepreneurship:

  • What is entrepreneurship? Defining entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial activity and enterprise.
  • The differences between serial entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs and owner-managers.

The typology of entrepreneurship:

  • Lifestyle and growth firms. Entrepreneurship in a corporate or public sector context.
  • Roles and characteristics of micro, small and medium-sized organisations.

Social enterprise:

  • Understanding social enterprise, social entrepreneurs and the growth of the social economy.

LO2 Assess the impact of small businesses on the economy

Where entrepreneurial ideas come from:

  • Definitions of creativity and innovation.
  • The main sources of generating business and entrepreneurial ideas.
  • How businesses protect intellectual property rights.

     The role and importance of small firms:

  • The number and type of small firms and their contribution to the economy at national, regional and local level.
  • Factors to consider: size, turnover, profit, rate of growth, innovation, sustainability and adaptability.

International aspects of entrepreneurship:

  • How international differences impact upon business start-up.

LO3 Determine and assess the key aspects of an entrepreneurial mindset

Entrepreneurial characteristics and mindset:

  • Research on personal characteristics of entrepreneurs and small business owners. Different lines of argument relating to characteristics of entrepreneurs such as are entrepreneurs born or made? Or can characteristics be learnt and adopted by anyone?

Skills set of the entrepreneur:

  • The types of skills that typify entrepreneurs and how these skills differentiate from other organisation managers.

Personal entrepreneurial tendency:

  • Entrepreneurial characteristics and situational factors in a personal context, including family upbringing, lifestyle, cultural differences and personal motivation and drivers.

LO4 Examine the different environments that foster or hinder entrepreneurship

The factors that influence the decision to start a business:

  • The range of factors that influence the choice to start-up a business, including personal background and education, national culture, economic circumstances and character traits.

The risks and rewards of business start-up:

  • The potential rewards of business start-up.
  • The risks and uncertainties of business start-up and how they can be mitigated.


  • BURNS, P (2011) Entrepreneurship and Small Business. 3rd Ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
  • DOWN, S. (2010) Enterprise, Entrepreneurship and Small Business. London: Sage


  • Journal of Small Business Management. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1540-627X)

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