The motivation to become an entrepreneur

The motivation to become an entrepreneur Purpose – Since the 1950s, organizational psychology research investigating work‐related motivation has progressed from static content models to dynamic process models. Entrepreneurship research has evolved along a similar trajectory, adapting organizational psychology findings to better understand the motivation to become an entrepreneur. This paper reviews motivation research from both fields, explores some of the commonalities among current theories, and presents a new model of entrepreneurial motivation. Design/methodology/approach – In an exploratory study, the ability of tolerance for risk, perceived feasibility, and perceived net desirability to predict intentions for self‐employment is examined in a sample of 114 undergraduate business students at Florida Gulf Coast University. Findings – Results indicated that tolerance for risk, perceived feasibility and net desirability significantly predicted self‐employment intentions, with an adjusted R 2 of 0.528. Research limitations/implications – Because the sample consisted entirely of undergraduate business students, findings may not be generalizable to non‐student populations. This research did not examine the role of negative motivations, or “push” factors. The cross‐sectional rather than longitudinal design of the study raises the usual caveats regarding lack of causal evidence. Finally, a limitation of any survey research is the inability to ask follow‐up questions and explore in more depth the reasoning behind any finding. Future research including qualitative interviews and/or focus group sessions could therefore provide rich explanatory information that could add value to the survey data. Practical implications – As a result of this research, educators, government officials, and others interested in stimulating entrepreneurial motivation should consider how their words and actions affect potential entrepreneurs’ perceptions of entrepreneurial feasibility and net desirability. Originality/value – Although the model is original and unique, it is based on established theories and models. It provides a well‐supported explanation of the motivation to become an entrepreneur that will be useful to potential entrepreneurs and those who encourage and guide them. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research Emerald Publishing

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1355-2554
DOI
10.1108/13552550510580834
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – Since the 1950s, organizational psychology research investigating work‐related motivation has progressed from static content models to dynamic process models. Entrepreneurship research has evolved along a similar trajectory, adapting organizational psychology findings to better understand the motivation to become an entrepreneur. This paper reviews motivation research from both fields, explores some of the commonalities among current theories, and presents a new model of entrepreneurial motivation. Design/methodology/approach – In an exploratory study, the ability of tolerance for risk, perceived feasibility, and perceived net desirability to predict intentions for self‐employment is examined in a sample of 114 undergraduate business students at Florida Gulf Coast University. Findings – Results indicated that tolerance for risk, perceived feasibility and net desirability significantly predicted self‐employment intentions, with an adjusted R 2 of 0.528. Research limitations/implications – Because the sample consisted entirely of undergraduate business students, findings may not be generalizable to non‐student populations. This research did not examine the role of negative motivations, or “push” factors. The cross‐sectional rather than longitudinal design of the study raises the usual caveats regarding lack of causal evidence. Finally, a limitation of any survey research is the inability to ask follow‐up questions and explore in more depth the reasoning behind any finding. Future research including qualitative interviews and/or focus group sessions could therefore provide rich explanatory information that could add value to the survey data. Practical implications – As a result of this research, educators, government officials, and others interested in stimulating entrepreneurial motivation should consider how their words and actions affect potential entrepreneurs’ perceptions of entrepreneurial feasibility and net desirability. Originality/value – Although the model is original and unique, it is based on established theories and models. It provides a well‐supported explanation of the motivation to become an entrepreneur that will be useful to potential entrepreneurs and those who encourage and guide them.

Journal

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & ResearchEmerald Publishing

Published: Feb 1, 2005

Keywords: Entrepreneurs; Motivation (psychology); Individual psychology; Risk management

References

  • Social Learning Theory
    Bandura, A.
  • Investigating interactive effects in the theory of planned behavior in a service‐provider switching context
    Bansal, H.
  • Entrepreneurship: productive, unproductive and destructive
    Baumol, W.J.
  • Does entrepreneurial self‐efficacy distinguish entrepreneurs from managers?
    Chen, C.C.; Greene, P.G.; Crick, A.
  • Entrepreneurship as a utility maximizing response
    Douglas, E.J.; Shepherd, D.A.
  • Interviews of deshopping behaviour: an analysis of theory of planned behaviour
    King, T.
  • Competing models of entrepreneurial intentions
    Krueger, N.F. Jr; Reilly, M.D.; Carsrud, A.L.
  • Why women enter into entrepreneurship: an explanatory model
    Orhan, M.; Scott, D.

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