Date of Conferral


Date of Award

February 2024


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


Business Administration


Beverly Muhammad


Accessing financial capital is an essential aspect of small business survival because the lack of funding is detrimental to the performance and sustainability of small businesses. Small business owners are concerned about gaining access to financial capital because it is vital to small businesses’ survival. Grounded in Donaldson’s pecking-order-theory, the purpose of this qualitative multiple case study was to explore strategies small business owners used to sustain their businesses. The participants were three small business owners of the restaurant industry who successfully accessed capital from banks and financial institutions to help sustain their businesses. Data were collected through semistructured interviews using open-ended questions, reviews of business plans via Zoom, and reviews of public websites. Through thematic analysis, four key themes were identified: (a) sources of small business financing, (b) strategic planning for small business sustainability, (c) experience and education, and (d) networking. One key recommendation for small business owners is to not exhaust all of their funds before seeking external funding. The implications of positive social change include the potential to provide job opportunities and consistent business products and services to community residents.