Assignment Two: Entrepreneur Case Study
Word count: 3000, excluding title page, exec summary, table of contents and references
The purpose of this assignment is to collect data on and write a case study of a small or medium-sized enterprise based in New Zealand. This assignment will require you to conduct an interview with the entrepreneur or owner/ manager of a small or medium-sized enterprise, where the focus will be on enterprise development strategies and factors that influence enterprise development.
Learning objectives addressed
LO2: Demonstrate an understanding of enterprise development strategies in different organisations
LO3: Analyse the influence of personal, economic, social, political, environmental and ethical factors on the enactment of entrepreneurial behaviour
This assignment requires you to write a case study of a small or medium-size enterprise based in New Zealand. The focus in this assignment is on enterprise development strategies and factors that influence enterprise development. The assignment will require that you conduct an interview with an entrepreneur (however defined) in any industry, and it is recommended that you choose a business/entrepreneur who started more than a year ago to ensure that you have enough to discuss, and that your interviewee is the main decision-maker in her or his venture.
Case study content
Your case study report will need discuss the following key elements (but not necessarily in this order):
- The key features of the business model for this enterprise, drawing on elements within the Business Model Canvas
- The goals (short and long-term) that the entrepreneur has for the enterprise
- The current performance of the enterprise (growth trajectory, etc.)
- Enterprise development strategies that have been adopted, in other words – what has been done to develop the business?
- Factors that influence enterprise development including discussion on the role of business ethics and trends such as growing social consciousness, awareness of sustainability issues and growing concerns about business responsibility.
Table of Contents (optional)
Introduction (section 1)
Discussion (section 2)
References (section 5)
Appendices – Include interview questions and signed consent form
- Declare any personal connection you have to the interviewee/enterprise used as the case study for this assignment and briefly explain the nature of that connection. The words in this statement will not count for the assignment word length.
- If requested by your interviewee, please ensure that you change the name of the interviewee and any identifying details in your report.
Some advice: What are you going to ask?
- Start by thinking about the broad topics you are interested in – what do you find out? Sketch out some ‘open’ questions that help elicit discussion around these topics.
- Shape your questions to fit your particular interviewee. You want to tap into their experiences & expertise.
- Ask ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions rather than ‘what’ questions.
- Consider follow-up questions, clarification questions, comparison/contrast questions
- Develop probe questions to get more detailed responses to key questions
- Think about the flow of questions – what topics should you cover first? Start with easy questions to help establish rapport
Some advice: The literature
- Apply the various theoretical frameworks and concepts we have studied to the case, with the goal of identifying and discussing the most important issues at stake for the enterprise. This could include, e.g., business models/the Business Model Canvas; enterprise development strategies such as traditional market-led or Blue Ocean; the impact of specific environmental factors on business models and enterprise development (e.g. industry forces; key trends; market forces and macro- economic forces), and so forth.
- Try to be both specific and expansive – apply the topics that make the most sense, and be precise and accurate in doing this. The more you are able to apply the literature to the case, the better. This includes analysing shortcomings of or divergences from the literature.
- The class materials articles will not cover everything that is relevant about your case. You are expected to locate additional research as appropriate.