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Disclosing smaller business success and failure.

Ritchie, J. and Richardson, S. (2004) 'Disclosing smaller business success and failure.', British accounting review., 36 (3). pp. 233-250.


The article argues that smaller businesses are mostly sidelined from the current debate about corporate governance. As a result they are less scrutinized than their larger corporate counterparts. They are afforded exceptionalist ‘special case’ status and are specially promoted through state policy, yet genuine grassroots evidence would appear lacking. The state therefore currently proceeds with its ‘British enterprise revolution’ and ‘new’ enterprise culture with targets and measures that would underline smaller business ‘success’ while reconstructing ‘failure’ at the same time. Thus, as long as accounting disclosures are taken as definitive evidence of such businesses’ success and failure, the critical study of actual accounting within them might produce more grassroots evidence regarding their exceptionalist ‘special case’ claims. The case study, MIS Limited, used here for this purpose, reveals other sides to the personalism associated with managing smaller businesses, which question these claims. As a ‘real-time’ accounting-practitioner investigation of the actual processes of smaller business success and failure, both the case study and research process are relatively unusual, but they could point to new directions for further research.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:British enterprise revolution, Exceptionalist, Smaller business exceptionalism, Personalism.
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
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Record Created:26 Mar 2007
Last Modified:06 May 2015 10:07

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