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The process of small business management needs to be understood within the context of the overall enterprise environment that consists of micro, small and medium-sized firms, within the entrepreneurial culture from which they are formed, and within the support networks that allow them to get started. Enterprise, entrepreneurship and small business management are closely related concepts but are not identical. Entrepreneurship is about new entry, new products or services, and the desire to grow a venture and maximise profits Entrepreneurs are typically strategic in their outlook. Small business management is about the operation of small ventures that may or may not have entrepreneurial capacity. Owner-managers of small firms are often focused on lifestyle. Many myths exist about entrepreneurs. Generally, they are not as risk oriented, not high-tech, not experts in their fields, and not strategically focused or supported by venture capital as is popularly believed. Entrepreneurs typically identify opportunities, marshal the necessary resources needed to launch their venture, and then build capability over time. Most entrepreneurial ventures are led by one or two entrepreneurs who are supported by a small development team and a wider constituency of customers and employees. Small business start-ups are generally lacking in resources and should be managed to achieve break-even quickly with low fixed costs and a strong focus on cash flow. The start-up process typically involves: acquiring the motivation to start; identifying the idea and validating it through market feasibility testing; acquiring the resources to launch; and then launching. Most nascent entrepreneurs are influenced by common barriers and triggers when establishing their new ventures. These are a combination of internal and external factors. While each individual is different, motivation and a desire to follow personal goals or creative ideas may be the most powerful factors.
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