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Emeritus Professor of Decision Sciences
SMEs; Champions; Competitive advantage; Niche markets; Customer services; Innovation; Leadership
Makridakis S., Voudouris I., Lioukas S., Spanos Y. (2000). Greek Hidden Champions: Lessons from Small, Little Known Firms in Greece European Management Journal, 18(6), pp. 663-674.
The purpose of the research described in this paper is to first identify successful Greek SMEs that can be qualified as "hidden champions" and second to uncover the factors that have contributed to their success.These factors relate to their choice of markets served, their relationships with customers and suppliers, innovative behaviour, leadership and human resources management practices.The findings suggest that four overall themes or "recipes" may explain the success of these firms: (a) intense specialization in narrowly defined market segments, (b) commitment to customer service, (c) innovative culture and adaptation to new technologies and (d) strong leadership and a healthy organizational climate.