Effect of entrepreneurial practices on performance of micro women enterprises in Embu County, Kenya
Entrepreneurship is the backbone of economic stability among developed and developing countries of the world. Micro women enterprises have also contributed significantly in the creation of employment opportunities and alleviation of poverty. Despite the positive contributions of the women enterprises in the Gross National Product, quite a number of challenges are experienced during the inception and maturity stages of enterprise growth. It is on this background this study sought to establish the effect of entrepreneurial practices on performance of micro women enterprises in Embu County, Kenya. The specific objectives of the study were; to establish the influence of management knowledge, financial knowledge and marketing knowledge on performance of micro women enterprises in Embu County. This study was anchored on open system theory, financial literacy theory and relationship marketing theory.The study adopted descriptive research design that took a cross-sectional approach to collect data. Cross-sectional approach was considered appropriate because it provides the opportunity of establishing the statistical relationship that exist between variables of the study. The study adopted a census where all the 100 micro women enterprises in Embu were targeted and 143 were total respondents of the study. The unit of analysis was women who own or operate mobile money transfer enterprises while unit of observation were women enterprises in Embu County. Primary data was collected using structured questionnaires that comprised of open and closed questions while secondary data was collected from published content of financial statements and records of trade and licensing board of Embu County. Secondary data was analyzed using content analysis where key themes of published content were reviewed to make deductive arguments were made based on the objectives of the study. Validity of the instruments will be tested using financial experts and lecturers of Kenyatta University while reliability of the instrument was tested using Cronbach Alpha formula which adopted a reliability coefficient of 0.7. Data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics such as correlation and regression analysis. The analyzed data was presented in form of mean scores, standard deviation, percentages and frequency distribution. The study established that there was a positive significant relationship between management knowledge, financial knowledge and marketing knowledge and performance of micro women enterprises in Embu County. However, it was revealed that to some extent, majority of the entrepreneurs had partial knowledge on management, financial and marketing knowledge. The study concludes that unless the government intervenes in enlightening entrepreneurs and formulating business friendly policies, economic growth which is stimulated by investment in entrepreneurship would be a challenging task. The study recommends that the government of Kenya should intervene and develop policies that would promote small businesses and ensure effective frameworks are adopted to empower entrepreneurs through management, marketing and financial information for informed decisions.