Date of Conferral
Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)
Apparel manufacturing characterizes a sustainable means of creating employment and encouraging economic growth; however, 86% of U.S. apparel manufacturing companies and 74.7% in North Carolina have closed since the late 1990s. Less than 3% of apparel bought in the United States is domestic. The purpose of this case study was to explore the strategies used by American apparel manufacturing business leaders who produce competitive products using Porter's diamond theory as the conceptual framework. Data were collected through semistructured interviews of 4 business leaders from an apparel manufacturer that had been in business a minimum of 5 years in North Carolina. Member checking and transcript review were used to ensure the trustworthiness of the findings. Data were coded using a qualitative analysis software. Coded data were analyzed to identify themes. The results led to 3 major themes: technology, time, and brand development. The findings revealed that apparel manufacturing business managers used technology to produce competitive apparel products by owning the fiber, fabric, and technologies in the apparel products and shortened lead-times to the retailer. New knowledge from this study could contribute to social change through improved opportunities for apparel workers, improved business strategies among apparel manufacturing business leaders, and increased demand for apparel products produced in the United States. The findings from this study may also contribute to positive social change by potentially increasing business prospects for apparel manufacturers, suppliers, auxiliary businesses, thereby increasing revenue in North Carolina and the United States.