The Impact of Technological Innovative Entrepreneurial Development Programmes on the Performance of Small Scale Businesses in Ondo State, Nigeria
This study identified the technological development programmes available to entrepreneurs in Ondo state and evaluated the effectiveness of these programmes on the performance of small - scale businesses in the state. The study also assessed the constraints of implementing the programmes. This was with a view to improving on the quality of the entrepreneurial development programmes and fast tracking the development of small scale businesses in the state. One hundred and sixty of 200 small-scale industrialists on the register of the National Association of Small Scale Industrialists (NASSI), Ondo State Chapter, were randomly selected for this study. Data were collected from 95 firms that had participated in the entrepreneurship development programmes and 65 firms that had not participated in the entrepreneurship development programmes through the use of questionnaire, interview schedule and personal observation. The instruments elicited information on the socio-demographic background of the entrepreneurs, level of awareness of the entrepreneurs about the entrepreneurial development programmes and the performances of their businesses. Descriptive statistics were employed for data analysis. The results of the study showed that six entrepreneurship development programmes were operational in Ondo state were: (1) work for yourself programme, (2) start your business programme, (3) improve your business programme, (4) the EMPRETEC entrepreneurship development programme, (5) technological business incubator programme and (6) work improvement for small enterprises programme. The entrepreneurship development programmes were rated average in terms of content ( X = 3.59), quality of trainers ( X = 3.69), cost in terms of benefit and affordability (X= 3.46) and location (X= 3.34). The results also showed monthly value added of N232,052.64 growth rate of 0.02% and rate of networking of 5.90% for proprietors who participated in the programmes. Those who did not participate had monthly value added of N159,333.34, rate of growth of 0.01% and rate of networking of 0.02%. In addition, the respondents regarded accessibility to the programmes (28.10%) and finance (24.20%) as the major limiting factors on the implementation of the programmes, and lack of awareness of the programmes (3.80%) as the least factor militating against the implementation of the entrepreneurship development programmes. In conclusion, the study showed that in general, participation in technological innovative entrepreneurial development programmes had a positive impact on the performance of small-scale businesses in Ondo state.