A conceptual model of management learning in micro businesses: implications for research and policy

David Devins, Jeff Gold, Steve Johnson, Richard Holden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)


This article proposes the development of a conceptual model to help understand the nature of management learning in the micro business context and to inform research and policy discourse.

The model is developed on the basis of a literature search and review of academic and grey literature.

The model highlights the unique nature of the micro business learning environment. Meeting the diverse interests of micro business managers is a major challenge for agencies seeking to promote and deliver management and leadership skills. An intervention approach founded upon the relationship between the micro business manager and the intervention agency is crucial to the successful design and delivery of relevant services.

Research limitations/implications
The research identified a lack of literature associated with learning in the micro business context. The model should therefore be considered as partial, to be tested in practice and subject to revision as new understanding unfolds.

Practical implications
The conceptual model suggests that the foundation of successful intervention should be the interests of the managers themselves. Closer relationships between a flexible supply‐side and the micro business manager provide the foundation to improve the relevance of these interventions in the micro business context and to encourage access to learning opportunities amongst the employed workforce.

The research subject and the development of a unique conceptual model may be of use to researchers, practitioners, and policy makers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)540-551
JournalEducation and Training
Issue number8/9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes


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