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The
internal environment includes factors in the business environment that are
largely controllable by the business Fatoki & Garwe, (2010); Kolstad &
Wiig, (2015). Challenges in the internal environment of a business, includes
management competency and skills, limited financial knowledge and a lack of business
management training, technological capabilities. The literature will discuss
the internal environment factors, which include various factors, namely:
managerial competency and skill, access to finance and technological
capabilities.

The
individual characteristics focus on the influence of resources, in particular
the level of education, occupation of parents, age, managerial skill, previous
entrepreneurial experience and industry experience levels affecting business
firm performance. Age and years of formal education have been shown to
correlate positively with the business performance of women entrepreneurs.

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As
reckoned by Dolinski et al. (2000), less educated women may face financial or
human capital constraints which limit their business pursuits. At the same
time, managerial skills and particular strengths in generating ideas and
dealing with people (Birley and Norburn, 1997; Brush and Hisrich, 2001; Hisrich
and Brush, 2004; Hoad and Rosko, 1994) were important for a woman entrepreneur
in establishing a business.

 

Box,
Watts and Hisrich (2001) and Box, White and Barr (2003) found that the
entrepreneur’s years of prior experience in the industry are positively
correlated with firm performance. This is supported by Schiller and Crewson
(2000) who found that the dominant predictors of success for women
entrepreneurs are industry experience and years of self-employment. However,
Shim and Eestlick (1998) found that women have less work experience and their
firms were younger than men. As a result, they lack networks or contact,
socialization practices and family roles.

 

From the
environmental perspective, family influence, particularly parental influence
has been found as the antecedent of small business career interest. Family
members, especially parents play a key role in establishing the desirability
and credibility of entrepreneurial action for individuals. Scherer et al.
(1989) found that the presence of a parent entrepreneurial role model was associated
with an individual’s business performance. Individuals with a parent
entrepreneurial role model were perceived to be high performers and were
significantly different from individuals without entrepreneurial role models,
who were perceived to be low performers. The majority of successful women
entrepreneurs identified one parent as being more influential, that is, many
successful women identify strongly with their fathers (Henning and Jardim,
1999).

 

Belcourt
et al.’s (2001) study reported that 33 percent of Canadian women entrepreneurs
surveyed stated their fathers were entrepreneurs. This is logical as
parent-child relationship promotes achievement striving and independence (Stein
and Bailey, 2003).

 

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