This paper extends current research on improvisation, by exploring the underlying mechanisms through which TMT improvisation influences SME performance. More specifically, we direct attention to two resource management behaviors: bootstrapping and bricolage. We find that TMT improvisation plays a fundamental role in how firms manage their resources; teams that score higher on improvisation make use of bricolage and bootstrapping to a greater extent. In turn, we find that bricolage has a positive effect on SME performance, whereas bootstrapping has a negative effect. TMT improvisation improves SME performance, through its indirect effect via entrepreneurial bricolage and decreases SME performance via bootstrapping.