It is widely recognised that entrepreneurial growth orientation has a positive effect on small firm performance. However, little attention has been paid to the stability of growth orientation and the “feedback” effect of past growth on the intention of entrepreneurs to grow in the future. Moreover, previous findings from the motivation-performance literature can be misleading or inconclusive due to the failure to consider the moderating role of human capital and financial resource. This moderating effect is especially important in a severe economic recession, when resources and growth opportunities become even scarcer for the already resource-limited small business sector. This study aims to fill this gap by investigating the longitudinal inter-correlation between growth performance and entrepreneurs’ growth orientations in a recessionary environment, taking into consideration the possible moderating effect of human capital (education and experience) and access to finance.