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Training and ethnic minority firms: the case of the independent restaurant sector

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Through the medium of a case study of Birmingham's ethnic minority-owned independent restaurant sector, the nature of training in the firms, the reasons for informal training, and employees' tolerance of harsh working conditions are examined. The reluctance of many small businesses to utilise formal programmes of training is confirmed. However, even in this sector, which is characterised by poor personnel practices, the importance of informal approaches to training and learning is noteworthy. Moreover, from the perspective of workers, employment in the ethnic minority business sector can be seen as a form of training in itself; it can constitute an "apprenticeship" for entrepreneurship rather than permanent entrapment in low-paid work. However, the capacity to realise this goal is contingent upon the availability of class resources. Further research is needed to explore approaches to training in other sectors that ethnic minorities are engaged in.
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Keywords: Ethnic groups; Performance; Restaurants; Small firms; Training; Working conditions

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2000-06-01

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