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Family Entrepreneurship Orientation in Family Owned SMEs: A Key Resource for Internationalization?




Objective: The main goal of this article is to find the answer to the questions: what is the nature of the internationalization of family businesses from Poland? Do they internationalize ad hoc or do they plan an internationalization strategy? Which resources are needed for the internationalization process?

Research Design & Methods: The author used qualitative approach with CATI (Computer Assisted Telephone Interview), PAPI (Paper & Pen Personal Interview) and CAII (Computer Assisted Internet Interview) methods. 420 questionnaires were used in the statistical analysis.

Findings: This study focuses on the evaluation of entrepreneurship orientation as the main resource of the internationalization nature (ad hoc or a strategic plan) of family businesses from Poland and measured it through the four elements proposed by Covin and Slevin (1989): Innovation, Proactivity, Autonomy and Risk.

Implications & Recommendations: To internationalise, family business families need to apply entrepreneurship orientation, especially proactiveness towards new challenges, and strategic planning and tools.

Contribution & Value Added: The research provides evidence of a higher degree of EO in the behaviour of a family. More successful family businesses are in international markets. They also have a challenge oriented culture, which means that such companies are oriented towards new ventures, new relations, new solutions and new markets. But they plan new challenges using the strategic approach.



family businesses, internationalization, entrepreneurship orientation, resource-based view



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