This paper explores whether skills training in business performance and customer practices was a promising way to increase business outcomes among self-employed workers who operate small businesses in developing countries. Taining in business-management skills and business and inter-personal skills was randomize among BRAC’s Small Enterprise Programme firm owners in Liberia. Firm owners who received either training experienced an increase in attention to customers, which consequently enhanced the performance of the businesses, including higher average monthly revenue, less loss of customers, and a smaller likelihood of encountering business losses. Customers, however, reported no effect on their customer experiences.
Business performance of the firm and customer satisfaction.
Business owners that were offered either version of the training show better marketing, customer care and business operations practices eight month after the training.
Businesses receiving either training are 16% less likely to have lost clients in the past months, and eight months after the training have a higher number of customers.
Business sales increase by 45% among those receiving either of the training versions within the eight following months.
Average profits are not higher among those that receive any training than among those that don’t, although the former are 10% less likely to experience losses.
The effects of the training are not significantly higher for those that receive the additional training day on interpersonal skills than for those that don't, despite the latter showing slightly better results in customer attention.