The role of gender and education on small business performance in the South African small enterprise sector

Simon Radipere, Shepherd Dhliwayo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The study aims to find out the extent to which demographic factors influence business performance. This study examined the effect demographic variables: gender and education of owner have on business performance. Business performance is measured by income, profit, market share, return on income or investment, number of employees and product line. A structured research instrument was used to collect data from 500 SMEs in retail industry through interviewer administrated and selfadministrated survey and 93% of questionnaires were returned. It was found that there is a significant difference between mean values of business performance and the demographic variables, gender and education. The results show that there is a significant difference in performance, among the different educational levels. Those with higher levels of education, such as diplomas and degrees should be encouraged to take up entrepreneurship as career options since the businesses they would run (according to the study's findings) will perform better and this would be good for the economy. The results also show that the variable "gender" does play a significant role in business performance. This implies that gender affects business performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)104-110
Number of pages7
JournalMediterranean Journal of Social Sciences
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - May 2014


  • Education
  • Gender and SMEs
  • Small business performance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Arts and Humanities
  • General Social Sciences
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (all)


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