Entrepreneurial Culture and Growth of Micro and Small Enterprises; A Case of Nairobi City County, Kenya
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Micro and Small Enterprises growth plays a critical role within social, political, and economic pillars of development in the Less Developed Countries. They have a primary role in providing employment opportunities, enhancing income distribution, and alleviating poverty in Kenya, particularly, in the Jua Kali sector. Contrary to their significance in society, majority of Micro and Small Enterprises are prone to failure as early statistics point to the fact that three out five start-ups hardly live to their first birthday. The purpose of the research was to establish the relationship of entrepreneurial culture (opportunity focus, innovation, networking, and risk taking) and the growth of MSEs. The appropriate design employed for the study was descriptive research design. The target study population was Nairobi City county-based entrepreneurs. The population sample consisted 300 entrepreneurs from Kawangware market who have registered businesses with Nairobi county offices. The Micro and Small Enterprises were drawn from several sectors including trade, manufacturing, transport, and services sectors. Systematic and Stratified sampling strategies was appropriate for selection of 60 respondents as a sample size for the study. Data collection was done by administration of closed and open-ended questionnaires. The collected data was analyzed using descriptive statistics i.e. the mean, percentage, and frequencies. Inferential techniques of multiple regression analysis were also used in the analysis. Statistical Package for Social Sciences was used to aid in the analysis. Findings of the study indicates that Opportunity focus had a mean of 3.8102 and a standard deviation of 1.36. Risk taking had a mean of 4.122 and a standard deviation of 1.046. Most of the respondents indicated that most entrepreneurs were risk- averse and even though their risk appetite was high, they were reluctantantly willing to take up the challenge. The findings also show that Innovation necessitated starting up of many Micro and Small Enterprises. Innovation was determined based on the product transformations and positive improvements in the business processes. Networking played acritical role in the development and expansion of the Micro & Small Enterprises for it provided platforms of marketing businesses. This entrepreneurial culture variables were critical in the growth of Micro and Small Enterprises in Nairobi County. It was established that most of the Micro and Small Enterprises (50%) were aged between 9 - 11 years, 12.5% for 6 -8 years and 6.25% indicated that the MSEs have been in existence for between 0-5 years and another 6.25% existed 15 – 17 years. This clearly shows that the Micro and Small Enterprises sector in Nairobi is a mature sector. Again, 50% of the respondents said that the Micro and Small Enterprises dealt in retail trade, 12.5% in manufacturing, 18.75% in motor transport and 18.75% in the hotel sector. This finding shows that in Nairobi City County, the number of Micro and Small Enterprises dealing in retail trade is more than those dealing in manufacturing, transport, and hotel services. It can be noted from the study that, 13% of entrepreneurs were once been employed for 0-5 years, 19% for 6-10 years 44% for 11-15 years and 24% for 16 and more years. Recommendations were made on the need for entrepreneurs and potential entrepreneurs to embrace a positive entrepreneurial culture of being opportunity-focused, innovation, networking, and courageous in risk taking in their daily business endeavors in pursuit of business growth.