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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|9396||2010||10 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Vocational Behavior, Volume 77, Issue 1, August 2010, Pages 63–72
What predicts adults' entrepreneurial intentions? Utilizing a cross-sectional sample of 496 German scientists, we investigated a path model for the effects of entrepreneurial personality (Big Five profile), control beliefs, and recalled early entrepreneurial competence in adolescence (early inventions, leadership, commercial activities) on two types of entrepreneurial intentions (conditional and unconditional intentions). As expected, entrepreneurial personality and early entrepreneurial competence on the one hand and both types of entrepreneurial intentions on the other were associated. Findings of structural equation modeling further revealed indirect effects via control beliefs (e.g., mediation effects). The results highlight the importance of a life span developmental approach in entrepreneurship research and support the idea that entrepreneurship can be promoted early in life. The findings are discussed against the backdrop of the economic and societal values that entrepreneurship has in today's societies.
Promoting entrepreneurship may be vital for the success of today's societies, which face enormous economic and social challenges (Audretsch, 2007). Recently, policymakers stressed that this promotion, in general, should start early in life and that public measures should target the education of “the next wave of entrepreneurs” by fostering youths' early entrepreneurial competence (e.g., basic business knowledge or leadership) (European Commission, 2006 and World Economic Forum, 2009). However, although such activities seem to partly follow a life span developmental perspective (Baltes et al., 2006 and Elder, 1998), entrepreneurship research to date has rarely addressed early antecedents of entrepreneurial activities (e.g., early entrepreneurial competence in adolescence). In contrast, entrepreneurial personality traits have received considerable attention in the entrepreneurship literature. However, whereas some researchers emphasized the central role of personality (Rauch & Frese, 2007), others argued that this may be misleading as more proximal factors such as behavioral characteristics are disregarded (Gartner, 1989). One way to combine both views is to investigate proximal variables that mediate the effects of personality traits on entrepreneurial outcomes. However, such mediation models have rarely been studied so far. In view of these research gaps, this study sought to examine early entrepreneurial competence in adolescence and entrepreneurial personality traits as predictors of entrepreneurial intentions and, in addition, to investigate underlying mediation effects.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This study examined early entrepreneurial competencies in adolescence, reported retrospectively, and entrepreneurial personality as predictors of entrepreneurial intentions in adulthood. Moreover, entrepreneurial control beliefs were studied as mediators. Consistent with the trait approach (e.g., Rauch & Frese, 2007), personality appeared to be relevant for entrepreneurship. Drawing from a person-oriented approach (Magnusson, 1998), we examined an entrepreneurial personality pattern by considering the goodness-of-fit between an observed Big Five personality pattern and a given entrepreneurial reference type (i.e., highest values in extraversion, consciousness, and openness; lowest values in neuroticism and agreeableness). We found that those participants with higher similarity to the reference type showed higher conditional and unconditional entrepreneurial intentions. Moreover, participants who had shown entrepreneurial competencies (i.e., leadership, inventions, and commercial activities) at around 14 or 15 years of age also had higher entrepreneurial intentions now. Our findings hint at considerable continuity between adolescence and adulthood in terms of entrepreneurial agency, manifested by age-appropriate expressions of relevant activities. It was an early form of entrepreneurial activity in adolescence that predicted the intention to engage in “real” entrepreneurship (e.g., founding a firm) in adulthood. This is consistent with longitudinal findings on the relation between age-appropriate competencies in adolescence and work outcomes in adulthood ( Clausen, 1991 and Roisman et al., 2004) and underlines a basic notion of modern developmental psychology. Life-stage appropriate achievements in one developmental epoch are probabilistically associated with life-stage appropriate outcomes in the next, “however phenotypically dissimilar” ( Roisman et al., 2004 and Sroufe and Rutter, 1984; for the case of vocational development, see also Super, 1980). Note that entrepreneurial personality and early entrepreneurial competence also correlated with both intentions when considering latent variables (which are shown in Figs. 1A and B). As expected, personality and early competence appeared to be associated. Participants with an entrepreneurial personality profile reported higher levels of early entrepreneurial competence. This is in line with Schmitt-Rodermund, 2004 and Schmitt-Rodermund, 2007 developmental model, which assumes that adolescents' early entrepreneurial competencies are, along with the influence of early stimulating environments, affected by their personality profile. Although we had to deal with retrospective reports on early entrepreneurial competence while we only had current data on personality, it seems feasible to assume that the relationship with an entrepreneurial personality profile is not one of common variance with a third variable. At least this is how we interpret the fact that the same relationship was found in studies on adolescent participants, and, even more importantly, in a prospective longitudinal study on the early entrepreneurial competences of the Terman boys in relation to their parents' reports on their sons' personalities a year earlier (Schmitt-Rodermund, 2007). Bringing these findings together with the fact that numerous studies found personality traits to be widely stable over long periods of time (Caspi, Roberts, & Shiner, 2005), we are confident of the important role of personality in the early process of competence growth. Interestingly, there were no direct effects of personality concerning the plan to start one's own business, neither on conditional nor on unconditional intentions. Rather, entrepreneurial intentions were fed by early entrepreneurial competences such as early leadership experiences or the number of inventions during adolescence. However, this does not indicate irrelevance of an entrepreneurial personality profile as an antecedent of scientists' entrepreneurial intentions. It shows rather that personality does not predict entrepreneurial intentions over and beyond the effect of early entrepreneurial competence. It seems that personality assets are the motor of activities and expectations that channel an individual's career development into a certain direction, a view that is supported by theories on interest development (Eccles, 2005). This clearly underscores the importance of a developmental perspective in addition to the (well-established) personality approach in entrepreneurship research. Moreover, we were interested in the role of entrepreneurial control beliefs as a more proximal mediator for entrepreneurial activity in the future. Drawing from the theory of planned behavior (Ajzen, 1991), we focused on control beliefs. Specifically, following Skinner et al. (1988) we examined whether individuals perceived that they had the relevant means to succeed as entrepreneurs (i.e., agent-means beliefs) and whether they actually thought they could successfully found a business (i.e., agent-ends beliefs). We found that the effect of early competencies on entrepreneurial intentions was partially mediated by control beliefs. Although our data was only correlational in nature, the story may read as follows: Participants who had shown entrepreneurial competence early in life developed higher entrepreneurial intentions in adulthood because they were confident that they could be successful. In other words, early characteristics and experiences seem to be associated with entrepreneurial thinking in adulthood (Krueger, 2007). We also found that participants with entrepreneurial personality patterns had higher entrepreneurial control beliefs. Such control beliefs in turn predicted conditional and unconditional entrepreneurial intentions. Personality thus had an indirect effect on entrepreneurial outcomes via control beliefs but, in contrast to what was expected in our model, we found no mediation effect here. In sum, control beliefs emerged as a key variable in understanding the effect of early competencies and personality on entrepreneurial intentions. Control beliefs figure prominently in psychological research (Skinner, 1996) and are closely related to concepts such as self-efficacy (Bandura, 1997) or locus of control (Rotter, 1966). Moreover, control beliefs may set off actual control-striving processes (e.g., Heckhausen & Schulz, 1995) and, thus, not only pave the way to forming entrepreneurial intentions but also may eventually lead individuals to cross the decisional “Rubicon” (Heckhausen, 1991) and actually engage in specific entrepreneurial activities (see also Ajzen, 1991). Finally, it is notable that early entrepreneurial competence still had a (small) direct effect on unconditional intentions in our mediation model (β = .14, p < .05; see Fig. 2C), which might be due to additional mediators (besides control beliefs). Although we can only speculate, our data suggests that early entrepreneurial competence could also operate via participants' perceived entrepreneurial opportunities. As shown in Table 1, early inventions, leadership, and commercial activities correlated positively with the perceived marketing potential of their own research. For example, scientists who frequently developed ideas during their teenage years about things that could sell well might have also developed ideas about how to commercialize their research. Likewise, Shane et al. (2003) stress that specific skills and abilities underlie entrepreneurial opportunity recognition.