Internal Change in Internationalizing SMEs The Challenges of Going Local to Global: A Human Resource Perspective
The internal internationalization of SMEs is a growing research area, but there is a lack of research regarding how SMEs develop internal resources when internationalizing and how this change facilitates firms’ internationalization. This case study examines five Swedish SMEs in trying to understand how these types of firms have developed their human resources when internationalizing and how they overcome challenges associated with this. Theoretical results acknowledge the significance of firms’ capacity to change internally during internationalization, due to dynamic capabilities. Thus, the theoretical framework demonstrates the importance of having the right mix of human resources that can change and adapt during internationalization. Empirical results indicate that firms need to develop/acquire new knowledge and capabilities to drive internationalization successfully. Challenges in doing this were found in the transition of going from local to global mind-sets and competencies. To meet this challenge firms require managers and employees who can develop firms’ dynamic capabilities and drive change forward. Therefore, this study contributes by investigating, from a managerial perspective, how the human resources develop in the context of internal change during internationalization of SMEs.
Master Degree Project