Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)

Degree Program

Global Leadership - with a specialization in Corporate and Organizational Management


College of Business and Management

First Advisor

Ralph Norcio

Second Advisor

Ericka Grodzki

Third Advisor

Alison Rampersand


There are countless academic studies concerning the factors of business success. The topic of small business success factors was developed after identifying a gap in the small business literature. It was discovered that the role that culture, location, and the small business owner-manager's skill at speaking a secondary language played in successful small businesses in the South Florida area has not been studied.

From the empirical and theoretical literature, business success is an important area of study because of its economic, competitive, and social impact to organizations.

The primary purpose of this qualitative, non-experimental and descriptive study was to investigate the combination of the demographics of the small business owner-manager; the culture of the small business owner-manager; characteristics of the small business, and the small business location that are critical to small business success.

The development of the questionnaire instrument allowed for the derivation of variables that are related to earlier and current works in the field thus providing a strong evidence base for research.

From the empirical literature reviewed, most studies lack a sample size adequate for rigorous analysis. There were 154 small business owner-managers in Miami Dade and Broward County in Southeast Florida, USA that were selected as participants. The topics in the surveys were linked to the four research questions. The data were organized and analyzed to extract significant trends.

The findings of this study show a relationship between age, gender, managerial experience, educational level and fluency in a secondary language of the small business owner-manager and business success in South Florida. This study's findings also indicate a relationship between the small business owner-manager's culture and business success in South Florida. In addition, findings from this study suggests that there is a relationship between products/se~ices, type of industry, type of customers, business structure, local governmental regulations, number of years in business and business success in the South Florida region. The study's findings also show that there is relationship between location and the success of a small business in South Florida.

Although some limitations were in this study, the findings contribute to the understanding of small business success. A more robust quantitative study design should be undertaken to uncover more concrete correlations among variables.

Included in

Business Commons



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