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To Master Disaster: How SME managers can thrive and benefit from economic crises
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Economic crises become progressively more global and the frequency as well as the length by which crises occur, is increasing. Crises affect all businesses differently and operating in times of crises is arduous which makes outcomes unpredictable. But there is one certainty: the manager’s approach to handling crises will affect the company’s output. The concept of antifragility will be introduced which means to go beyond resilience; with the purpose not only to survive crises but also to gain from the disorder that is caused by it. The antifragile uses change to its advantage and grows from it. In SMEs the manager has a significant responsibility and the future value of the company mainly a consequence of their actions. The natural response to crisis is to assume a defensive or passive posture and cut down expenses to survive. Essentially leaving the company vulnerable for a longer period of economic downturn, thus making it considerably more difficult when the market rebounds. This study aims to explore the field of antifragility and examine a manager’s possibilities to move towards the creation of an antifragile SME. Analysing the areas that move the company towards antifragility and how managers can utilize these assets to profit from economic crises is a key inquiry. To fulfil this purpose, the study is accompanied by qualitative case studies of seven Swedish SMEs which operated during the economic crisis in 2008 and 2009. The empirical data was collected through semi-interviews at each of the case companies. The theoretical framework includes the theoretical key success areas, strategy, opportunities and motivation, and different theories regarding managers and antifragility. The theoretical framework concludes with the theoretical synthesis developed from the theories presented earlier in the chapter. The findings from the interviews are presented in the empirical chapter. The analysis connects the theoretical framework to the empirical data, and forms the basis for the paper conclusions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 100 p.
Keyword [en]
Antifragility, manager, economic crisis, thriving, antifragile SME, strategy, opportunities, motivation
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-53185OAI: diva2:934567
Subject / course
Business Administration - Marketing
Educational program
International Business Strategy, Master Programme 60 credits
Available from: 2016-06-13 Created: 2016-06-09 Last updated: 2016-06-13Bibliographically approved

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