Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)


Business Administration


Rocky Dwyer


Small business owners employ over half the U.S. labor force, yet only 50% of small businesses survive beyond 5 years. When small business owners understand the factors that lead to their business failure, they can develop strategies to remain sustainable and profitable within the first 5 years, thus reducing the potential of business failure. Grounded in the resource-based theory, the purpose of this qualitative multiple case study was to explore strategies five small construction owners in central Georgia used to remain in business beyond 5 years. Data were collected from semi structured interviews, a review of organization income statements and balance sheets, and field notes. Three themes emerged from thematic analysis: strategic management, application of business strategies, and strategic business processes. A key recommendation is that leaders of small construction companies combine strategic management techniques such as networking, financial management, and leadership styles to create a platform to catalyze organizational productivity and customer satisfaction. The implications for positive social change include the potential for owners of small construction businesses to create jobs, support the economic development of regional communities, and foster positive community relations.