Diagnosing constraints in knowledge of SMEs

J.-P. Vos*, J.A. Keizer, J.I.M. Halman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademic

19 Citations (Scopus)
11 Downloads (Pure)


SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) have problems with both formulating and acquiring new knowledge and skills. A method is proposed to identify the knowledge and skills an SME requires to exploit its market opportunities. The method provides a quick but effective strategic analysis to diagnose gaps that are essential for a company in its attempt to maintain or improve its competitiveness. Within this method, gaps in knowledge and skills relate to a company’s market approach, product designs, production technology, and management methods. For the identified gaps, necessary actions are planned. This enables a company to acquire new knowledge and skills, and to bring its market approach, product designs, production technology, and management methods in line with both the company’s own ambitions and market demands. In applying the method, it turned out that the companies involved were made conscious of the emerging strategic pattern regarding their attempts to achieve competitive advantage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-239
JournalTechnological forecasting and social change
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1998


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