Part of the book: Global Perspectives on Sustainable Forest Management
Over the last 30 years, the forest industry in Eastern Canada has undergone a radical transformation, from a model where larger forestry businesses operated their own production equipment to a model where harvesting, transport, and forest road construction are awarded to contractors. This change in strategy on part of the large corporations has created new start-up opportunities for many forest entrepreneurs. Their dependency on a single large client (wood buyer), however, could hinder entrepreneurial behavior. This study aims to examine the forest Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) population, identify the factors that stimulate their performance despite a business environment that may be deemed unfavorable, and draw an overall picture of the existing situation. An analysis of 535 questionnaires filled by forest machine owners suggests that SMEs with four employees or more show better performance results than those with three or fewer employees, considered very small enterprises (VSEs), essentially because these businesses are typically able to work more weeks in a year. Their managers use a significantly higher number of tools to measure performance and attribute greater importance to management duties. The results have enabled us to identify certain performance factors, but suggest that further research is needed to better understand the underlying causes of contract assignment and the relationships that develop between SME managers and large forest product companies.
Part of the book: Precious Forests