Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University
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Critical Operating Problems and Survival Rates in Small Firms : A Look at Small Business Institute Clients
Vol. Volume 7, Number 1 April/2002

Chunchi Wu and Allan Young*
This paper analyzes data pertaining to the Small Business Institute Program compiled at one of its pilot educational institutions. It documents the primary problems faced by small businesses in this Program over a considerable period of time in a mid-sized metropolitan area in Upstate New York. We find that some of the problems encountered by small businesses persisted over time, while there were significant shifts in other problems as the economic environment changed. A hazard model is employed to analyze the survivorship of the sample firms. It is found that the nature of small businesses, the characteristic problems they faced and the type of industry they were in all affect the chances of their survival