Title: The relevance of slack resource availability and networking effectiveness for entrepreneurial orientation

Authors: Mathew Hughes; Fabian Eggers; Sascha Kraus; Paul Hughes

Addresses: Durham University Business School, Mill Hill Lane, Durham DH1 3LB, UK ' Menlo College, 1000 El Camino Real, Atherton, CA 94027, USA ' University of Liechtenstein, Fürst-Franz-Josef-Strasse, FL-9490 Vaduz, Liechtenstein ' Durham University Business School, Mill Hill Lane, Durham DH1 3LB, UK

Abstract: Motivated by the resource-based view of the firm and its Penrose-inspired views on resource orchestration, we seek to disentangle how resource availability might affect the emergence of an entrepreneurial orientation within firms, and how firms might redress the resource absorption effects of EO to enhance firm performance. Using a sample of 607 German small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), we investigate: 1) the influence of slack resource availability on the EO of SMEs; 2) the mediating effect of networking effectiveness on the relationship between EO and firm performance; 3) the influence of firm performance on slack resource availability. The results suggest that slack resource availability positively influences EO, networking effectiveness partially mediates the relationship between EO and firm performance, and the firm performance achieved to date positively influences slack resource availability. Our work reconciles EO with the RBV and contributes new knowledge to understand the resource absorption effects and resource refuelling needs contained within the EO-performance relationship - a hitherto ignored consideration.

Keywords: entrepreneurial orientation; slack resource availability; resource orchestration; networking effectiveness; firm performance; SMEs; Germany; small and medium-sized enterprises; entrepreneurship; RBV; resource-based view; resource absorption effects; resource refuelling needs.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2015.071323

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2015 Vol.26 No.1, pp.116 - 138

Received: 14 Sep 2014
Accepted: 26 Jan 2015

Published online: 20 Aug 2015 *

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