Date of Conferral



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


Business Administration


Jaime Klein


The restaurant industry is the second largest employee workforce in the United States. However, less than 35% of independently owned restaurants succeed beyond the first three years of operation. Some restaurant managers do not use innovation strategies to succeed beyond three years. The purpose of this multiple case study was to explore innovation strategies that some independent nonfranchise restaurant owners in Omaha, Nebraska used to succeed beyond 3 years. The conceptual framework utilized in this study was dynamic capabilities. Dynamic capabilities create avenues of innovation to restaurant owners who do not have quick access to resources, such as an innovation team or a (R&D) department. The restaurant owners have to collaborate with their employees, suppliers, and consumers to be members of their innovation team to determine the innovation strategies needed to sustain competitive advantage as they apply to dynamic capabilities. Formal semistructured interviews were conducted with 4 independently owned nonfranchise restaurant owners. Triangulation linked the transcribed interviews with secondary and tertiary data to gather enough information to saturate the key themes discovered in the research described by the dynamic capabilities framework. Secondary data included atmospherics, service innovations, menus, social media, and websites. Tertiary data comprised newspaper and magazine articles. The 3 themes were marketing innovations, restaurant innovations, and innovation measurement. The implications for positive social change include the potential to boost the local community's economy by encouraging more independent nonfranchise restaurant owners to enter the market that may increase the employees' wellbeing, strengthen their family economics, and benefit the independently owned nonfranchise restaurant market in Omaha, Nebraska.