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Small Business Management

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Question 1;

Pierre-André Julien, an economy teacher at Université de Trois-Rivières and member of the Institut de recherche sur les PME, once said that "to be able to compete with emerging countries, we have to innovate. And for that, we need a good contact network. But not a network of people like us. A network of weak links with people different from us."

In fact, nowadays, innovation for any company, let alone small businesses, is key. The main reason an entrepreneur, if not already doing it, should innovate is because this element gives its company a competitive advantage. Moreover, innovation has a very broad meaning: whether it's creating a new product, developing the actual product, incorporating new technologies or even optimizing their actual processes. The perfect guest to illustrate this fact is Mister Giancarlo, an entrepreneur who took over his family printing business. Their company Imprimeries Print 2 operates in the printing industry for the cosmetics and pharmaceutical sector. They print the boxes as well as the labels and the leaflets of their clients' products. They have been in business for over 33 years and we can say it's working very well. Before Giancarlo took over the company, seven years ago, he told us their processes were, if not all, manual. Their employees had to do everything and there weren't a lot of computerized processes. Needless to say that this was, obviously, not the most efficient because their employees had to deal with their daily frustrations related to the machines. In order to grow and to gain more customers, Giancarlo had no other choices than to innovate. This is the reason why he decided to computerize most of their processes that used to be controlled manually by their employees. This decision allowed them to improve their efficiency and, therefore, increase their productivity as well as being able to accept more orders from their growing customers' list.

Furthermore, as the global competition heats up, companies of every size are being forced to adapt their strategies to the world stage. It's with innovation that they achieve this. There is no other way around to beat the emerging countries: one has to as equally as good, if not, better. As a proverb puts it, if you can beat them, join them. The globalization of SMEs is key in order to compete with emerging countries. Companies have to be able to export their products just like the companies from emerging countries do. In fact, globalization brings small businesses and large firms together in formal partnerships that are mutually beneficial in many ways and develop creative synergies. "Facing the reality of globalization, large companies must learn to act quickly and small firms, to act farther". However, to get to these partnerships, a good network is key.

In the same vein, a good contact network provides good proximity to the company with their clients. As a matter of fact, for any growing small businesses, a good sales representatives network is important in order to advertise their product(s) in different regions of the world. For many SMEs with limited resources, their sales rep network often consist of their own contact network or of their network's network. Having a sales rep network allows the SMEs to establish close ties with clients, suppliers and employees, but also with creditors. Carol Adams, the Felt Bicycles' distributor is a perfect example. In order to answer the ever-growing demand of bicycles in a lot of different countries, such as Canada, the United States and Germany, Mrs. Adams has put in place a regional sales rep network. These representatives are, in fact, part of Mrs. Adams network however they are their own entrepreneurs. As a matter of fact, these sales rap, as a company, is weaker than Mrs. Adams' and above all, different from her.

Question 2; 597 words

Chariot Carriers Inc., located in Clagary, Alberta, is a small business started by an entrepreneur at heart who had a lot of ideas and dreams while in university. They specialize in multiuse child transportation system manufacturing. Owned by Dan Britton, when it was founded, this company has since been sold to the Thule Group know for its assortment of lifestyle outdoor products. In the following paragraphs, I will be analyzing the situation according to the model of the three "E" which are the entrepreneur, the environment and the enterprise.

First of all, the entrepreneur: Dan Britton, later joined by his brother, Chris Britton. As previously stated, Dan is an entrepreneur at heart. While in university, he had many ideas for a start-up business. Like many start-up business owners, he didn't want



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