Title: Resource Bundling and Leveraging: The Role of Entrepreneurial Orientation and Gender on Business Resilience
Abstract: If resources and capabilities are not changed or orchestrated into activities, routines, or business processes, companies are not able to become resilient, which is crucial in turbulent and resource scarce environments (Akgün and Keskin 2014). Two such orchestration processes are bundling and leveraging. This dynamic view of resource deployment highlights the role of entrepreneurs (Helfat 2007, Sirmon et al. 2007). In this study, entrepreneurial orientation (EO) which reflects the entrepreneur's managerial acumen and volitional act, is proposed as a driver for bundling and leveraging resources into business resilience. ‘Gender’ is seen to reflect the possibilities and constraints of entrepreneurs to enact their volition about female entrepreneurs’ due to their social and cultural position. This resource orchestration study is conducted in Ethiopia, a developing country with typical resource constraints and the continuous threat of disruptive events, on the bases of a sample of 408 small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Our results indicate that EO is related to mobilizing resources and boosting business resilience, although hampered by disruptive conditions. Generally, the findings suggest that EO is vital to fill the gap between available resources and business resilience for companies in resource scare environments by bundling and leveraging resources. Gender moderates the relationship between EO and resources, and between resources and business resilience. These results show that female entrepreneurs are better than male entrepreneurs in bundling resources, and outperform male counterparts in boosting business resilience even though the business environment for females is harsher than male entrepreneurs in the study context.
Keywords: Resource orchestration, bundling and leveraging, entrepreneurial orientation (EO), turbulent, resource-scarce business environments