Entrepreneurs’ Start-Up Cognitions and Behaviors: Dreams, Surprises, Shortages, and Fast Zigzags
15 Pages Posted: 25 Mar 2011
Date Written: 2003
I propose a mediation model of the cognitions and behaviors that successful entrepreneurs (vs. quitters) use to start "promising" companies. The model is based upon psychological theories about the causality among situation (environment), person (cognition), and behavior. Entrepreneurship, leadership and social cognition research concepts that have appeared as successful responses to uncertain dynamic environments, such as those faced by the typical entrepreneur, were studied. A three-year study involving six interviews of 122 would-be founders supported proposals that successful entrepreneurs: (1) think frequently about clear stable challenging visions, (2) apply automatic compressed experience, (3) borrow to overcome insufficient personal resources, (4) adapt goals to manage problems and opportunities, and (5) experiment. A zigzag pattern of quick responses to surprises and shortages emerged among the successful.
JEL Classification: M13
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation