Publication - Research and analysis

Behaviour and motivation of businesses: qualitative insights

Published: 1 Nov 2019
Part of:
Business, industry and innovation
ISBN:
9781839603105

Report on research to understand attitudes and behaviour of SME owners in Scotland in relation to business growth.

90 page PDF

781.9 kB

90 page PDF

781.9 kB

Contents
Behaviour and motivation of businesses: qualitative insights
Appendix A: Summary of insights and COM-B intervention functions

90 page PDF

781.9 kB

Appendix A: Summary of insights and COM-B intervention functions

The table below provides a summary of the insights that emerged from the research, the associated behaviors, and the potential range of different types of intervention functions that could be applied to each using the COM-B model.

Table A.1: Summary of insights, behaviours and intervention functions 

Activity/

attitude

Behavioural Insights

Source of Behaviour

Potential intervention functions

Education

Persuasion

Incentivisation

Coercion

Training

Restriction

Environmental restructuring

Modelling

Enablement

Overarching themes

Restricted growth capability

Perceived lack of skills, knowledge and expertise

Psychological capability

     

     

Perceived lack of resources (financial and/or people)

Physical capability 

       

     

Restricted growth opportunity

Growth impacted by market demand and performance, particularly in rural locations

Physical opportunity

         

 

Concerns around political and economic uncertainty

Physical opportunity

         

 

Perceived lack of time for growth related activity

Physical opportunity

         

 

Ambivalent growth motivation

Reluctance to step away from day to day operational activities to focus on growth activities

Automatic motivation

 

   

Lack of growth ambition due to being risk averse

Automatic motivation

 

   

Lack of growth ambition due fear of failure

Automatic motivation

 

   

Desire to remain in full control of the business

Automatic motivation

 

   

Concerns that growth would lead to increase costs

Reflective motivation

         

Environmental and contextual factors impacting on growth

Economy and market conditions

Growth impacted by financial climate and market performance

Physical opportunity

         

 

Restricted by competition from larger companies

Physical opportunity

         

 

Caution due to uncertainty around political landscape

Physical opportunity

         

 

Restricted by small markets that businesses struggle to grow themselves

Physical opportunity

         

 

Financial considerations

Growth impact by access to external finance, either from banks or grants

Physical opportunity

         

 

High business rates stifling growth

Physical opportunity

         

 

Policy, legislation and regulation 

Growth hampered by time and expense associated with compliance with legislation (e.g. minimum wage, health and safety)

Physical opportunity

         

 

Recruitment, retention and skills

Challenge finding people to fill positions

Physical opportunity

         

 

SMEs unable to offer competitive wages to match larger companies

Physical opportunity

         

 

A lack of accommodation in rural areas

Physical opportunity

         

 

Uncertainty over ability to hire non-UK EU nationals

Social opportunity

         

 

Physical assets

Growth encouraged or hampered by location of existing premises and/or availability of new premises

Physical opportunity

         

 

Growth impacted by availability of new equipment

Physical opportunity

         

 

Culture and mindset

Small-town mindsets restricting opportunities for growth

Social opportunity 

         

 

Lack of collective promotion of local areas

Social opportunity 

         

 

Behavioural factors

Barriers to having a business plan

Lack of external impetus to have a business plan

Physical capability

       

     

Do not have enough time for business planning

Physical capability

       

     

The perception that it is a theoretical document

Social opportunity

         

 

Perception that business plans were structured and inflexible

Social opportunity

         

 

Jargon' used in business planning guidance off-putting

Psychological capability

     

     

Belief that they had enough experience that they did not need to form a business plan

Automatic motivation

 

   

Barriers to making operational improvements/innovating

Perception that costs of making improvements may outweigh likely benefits

Reflective motivation

         

Lack of time to implement improvements 

Physical opportunity

         

 

Lack of general knowledge and skilled required to make changes

Psychological capability

     

     

Barriers to collaboration

Lack of awareness of potential benefits of collaboration

Psychological capability

     

     

Lack of time and/or resources 

Physical opportunity

         

 

Barriers to marketing or promotional activity 

Marketing not seen as a priority for businesses in early stages of their journey

Reflective motivation

         

Costs seen as restrictive

Physical opportunity

         

 

Lack of knowledge about marketing avenues available

Psychological capability

     

     

The role of support and advice

Awareness and perceptions

Low awareness of existing support agencies

Social opportunity

         

 

Perception that the landscape was confusing

Psychological capability

     

     

Misconceptions around the types of support available (e.g. support only available for certain types of business)

Social opportunity

         

 

Perception that agencies were unable to provide tailored or relevant support

Social opportunity

         

 

Perceived variation in the quality of advisors from support agencies

Psychological capability
(of the advisors)

     

     

Lack of time to engage with support agencies

Physical opportunity

         

 

Communication and marketing

Business mindset 

Businesses with low aspirations and risk averse, could benefit from positive campaigns and role models

Automatic motivation 

 

   

Language

Businesses put off by jargon used in communications 

Psychological capability

     

     


Contact

Email: EIDEEBSPEnquiries@gov.scot