University of Southern Queensland
Faculty of Business and Law
School of Management
Considerable evidence shows that strategic planning leads to increased firm performance. Yet, the majority of SMEs do not plan and the reasons why are not well understood. This article questions the common approach to understanding this problem based on identifying business barriers to planning. For the majority of SME owner operators, business performance often ranks far behind intangible goals such as autonomy, personal satisfaction and lifestyle. Strategic planning may therefore have little value to owner-operators driven by such motivators. This article presents an alternative perspective to the issue by arguing that owner aspirations are integral to whether or not SMEs strategically plan.