Date of Conferral



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


Business Administration


Ronald C. Jones


Despite policies for U.S. federal agencies to use open competitive procedures that increase small business participation in federal contracting, some small businesses do not win open competitive federal contracts. The purpose of this multiple case study was to explore the strategies some leaders of small businesses in the service industry have used to win open competitive U.S. federal contracts. The conceptual framework for this study was agency theory. The participants in this study were 6 leaders of small businesses in the state of Washington who successfully implemented strategies to win open competitive U.S. federal contracts. Data were collected through face-to-face, semistructured interviews and a review of company documents. Data were analyzed using Yin's 5-phase cycle of compiling, disassembling, reassembling, interpreting, and concluding the data, resulting in the 3 key themes: opportunity identification strategy, requirements strategy, and bid submission strategy. The findings indicated that leaders of small businesses win U.S. federal contracts by identifying contracting opportunities that meet their business model and risk tolerance, strengthening their knowledge of contract requirements, and increasing their participation in competitive public procurements. The implications of this study for positive social change include the potential for leaders of small businesses to lower the unemployment rate through the creation of jobs, increased innovation, and contribution to the economic growth of the local community.