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Is Entrepreneurial Success Predictable?: An Ex-ante Analysis of the Character-Based Approach

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  • Marco Caliendo
  • Alexander S. Kritikos

Abstract

This paper empirically analyzes whether the character-based approach, which is based on the personality structure and the human capital of business founders, allows prediction of entrepreneurial success. A unique data set is used consisting of 414 previously unemployed persons whose personal characteristics were screened by different methods, namely a one-day assessment center (AC) and a standardized questionnaire, before they launched their business. Results are partly unexpected: first, there is almost no correlation between the AC data and the questionnaire. Second, the predictive power of the AC data is slightly better than that of the questionnaire, but lower than expected in theory. Interestingly, for those subgroups where the AC data have low predictive power, the questionnaire does better. Third, when success is measured in terms of employees hired, the character-based approach is a poor predictor.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.55875.de/dp684.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 684.

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Length: 36 p.
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp684

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Keywords: Entrepreneurship; psychological assessment; character-based approach; success prediction;

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References

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  1. Dunn, Thomas & Holtz-Eakin, Douglas, 2000. "Financial Capital, Human Capital, and the Transition to Self-Employment: Evidence from Intergenerational Links," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 282-305, April.
  2. J. Wagner, 2003. "Testing Lazear's jack-of-all-trades view of entrepreneurship with German micro data," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(11), pages 687-689.
  3. Hartog, Joop & Ferrer-i-Carbonell, Ada & Jonker, Nicole, 2002. "Linking Measured Risk Aversion to Individual Characteristics," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(1), pages 3-26.
  4. Marco Caliendo & Alexander S. Kritikos & Frank Wießner, 2006. "Existenzgründungsförderung in Deutschland: Zwischenergebnisse aus der Hartz-Evaluation," Working Papers 0006, Gesellschaft für Arbeitsmarktaktivierung (GfA).
  5. Edward P. Lazear, 2004. "Balanced Skills and Entrepreneurship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 208-211, May.
  6. repec:att:wimass:8827 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Kihlstrom, Richard E & Laffont, Jean-Jacques, 1979. "A General Equilibrium Entrepreneurial Theory of Firm Formation Based on Risk Aversion," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(4), pages 719-48, August.
  8. Blanchflower, D.G. & Oswald, A., 1991. "What Makes an Entrepreneur?," Economics Series Working Papers 99125, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  9. Bianchi, Milo & Henrekson, Magnus, 2005. "Is Neoclassical Economics still Entrepreneurless?," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 584, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 02 Feb 2005.
  10. Caliendo, Marco & Fossen, Frank M. & Kritikos, Alexander S., 2006. "Risk Attitudes of Nascent Entrepreneurs: New Evidence from an Experimentally Validated Survey," Discussion Papers 252, European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), Department of Business Administration and Economics.
  11. Bonnett, Celia & Furnham, Adrian, 1991. "Who wants to be an entrepreneur? A study of adolescents interested in a Young Enterprise scheme," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 465-478, September.
  12. Holmes, Thomas J & Schmitz, James A, Jr, 1990. "A Theory of Entrepreneurship and Its Application to the Study of Business Transfers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(2), pages 265-94, April.
  13. Evans, David S & Jovanovic, Boyan, 1989. "An Estimated Model of Entrepreneurial Choice under Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 808-27, August.
  14. Brandstatter, Hermann, 1997. "Becoming an entrepreneur -- A question of personality structure?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 18(2-3), pages 157-177, April.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Caliendo, Marco & Fossen, Frank M. & Kritikos, Alexander S., 2010. "Trust, Positive Reciprocity, and Negative Reciprocity: Do These Traits Impact Entrepreneurial Dynamics?," IZA Discussion Papers 5370, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Marco Caliendo & Frank M. Fossen & Alexander S. Kritikos, 2011. "Personality Characteristics and the Decision to Become and Stay Self-Employed," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 369, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  3. Simoes, Nadia & Moreira, Sandrina B. & Crespo, Nuno, 2013. "Individual Determinants of Self-Employment Entry – What Do We Really Know?," MPRA Paper 48403, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Joanna Tyrowicz & Joanna Nestorowicz, 2010. "Cynicism Starts Young: Age and Entrepreneurship over Transition," Working Papers 2010-02, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
  5. Joyce Koe Hwee Nga & Gomathi Shamuganathan, 2010. "The Influence of Personality Traits and Demographic Factors on Social Entrepreneurship Start Up Intentions," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 95(2), pages 259-282, August.
  6. repec:hal:cesptp:halshs-00467900 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Rotger, Gabriel Pons & Gørtz, Mette & Storey, David J., 2012. "Assessing the effectiveness of guided preparation for new venture creation and performance: Theory and practice," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 506-521.
  8. Tyrowicz, Joanna, 2011. "What distinguishes entrepreneurs? Evidence on the motives for self-employment," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 112(3), pages 226-229, September.
  9. Man Zhang & Patriya Tansuhaj & James McCullough, 2009. "International entrepreneurial capability: The measurement and a comparison between born global firms and traditional exporters in China," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 7(4), pages 292-322, December.

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